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UPDATE 1-McDonald's Nov sales miss as U.S. weakness continues

Monday, 9 Dec 2013 | 8:48 AM ET

Dec 9 (Reuters) - McDonald's Corp reported weaker-than-expected global sales at established restaurants for November, hurt by a sharp drop in comparable-store sales in the United States.

The world's biggest hamburger chain said worldwide sales at restaurants open at least 13 months rose 0.5 percent last month, missing analysts' average estimate of a rise of 0.6 percent, according to Consensus Metrix.

Same-restaurant sales fell 0.8 percent in the United States, widely missing the 0.3 percent gain expected on average by the 14 analysts polled by Consensus Metrix.

The company said high competition and relatively weak customer traffic hurt sales in the United States, its second biggest market after Europe.

The world's largest hamburger chain had previously signaled that weakness would continue in the fourth quarter amid stiff competition and halting global economic growth.

U.S. analysts have said that adding new menu items such as lattes, smoothies, salads and wraps has slowed McDonald's service and hurt business.

It also has been less nimble than rivals such as Wendy's Co and Burger King Worldwide Inc in offering attention-grabbing promotions.

Same-restaurant sales in Europe rose 1.9 percent, topping the 0.8 percent analysts had expected on average, helped by strong sales in the United Kingdom, France and Russia.

Japan continued to be a drag as comparable sales in Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa region fell 2.3 percent. Analysts on average had estimated a 0.7 percent decline. Sales in Japan have been weak for the past seven months.

The Oakbrook, Illinois-based company's shares were down 0.6 percent at $96.20 in premarket trading on Monday.

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