McDonald's sales rise globally, but dip in US

NEW YORK _ McDonald’s global sales rose 2.7 per cent at established locations as growth overseas offset a drop in the U.S.

The world’s biggest burger chain attributed the decline at home to a tough comparison from the year-ago period, when it launched its all-day breakfast menu. The results nevertheless illustrate challenges for McDonald’s in its push to revitalize its image while facing broader industry challenges, including supermarkets and convenience stores selling more prepared foods and cheaper groceries encouraging people to eat at home.

Earlier this month, The NPD Group said it expects customer traffic for the restaurant industry to remain “stalled” this year, as it was in 2016.

The U.S. sales decline for the fourth quarter snaps a streak of five quarters of positive growth for the company. But the increases reflected higher spending per visit. For the year, McDonald’s disclosed on Monday that guest counts at established locations fell 2.1 per cent.

That marks the fourth straight year of declining guest counts at established U.S. locations.

McDonald’s Corp. said it earned a profit of $1.44 per share for the fourth quarter, topping the $1.41 per share that Wall Street expected, according to FactSet.

Revenue was $6.03 billion, above the $6 billion analysts expected.