McDonald's April sales at established restaurants declined slightly more than analysts had expected as it faced tougher times in Europe, Asia/Pacific, Middle East, and Africa.
The world's biggest restaurant chain by sales is coming off a long run of outperforming smaller rivals, which have recently been more nimble in introducing attention-getting menu items. Results have also been affected by the avian flu.
Global sales at McDonald's restaurants open at least 13 months declined 0.6 percent in April, a little more than the 0.48 percent fall analysts on average had estimated, according to Consensus Metrix.
April same-restaurant sales fell 2.4 percent in Europe and 2.9 percent in the Asia/Pacific, Middle East, and Africa (APMEA) region. The chain blamed the impact of the new strain of avian flu in China for the decline, as well as softness in Japan and Australia. Rival Yum Brands, which owns KFC and is China's biggest Western fast-food company, has also been slammed by the bird flu.