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McDonald’s Is Losing America

On Monday, McDonald’s reported global same-store sales that declined 2.2% month-on-month.

This missed analysts’ expectations for a 1.7% decline.

In the US, the story was even worse for the fast-food giant, as same-store sales fell 4.6%.

To the right is the staggering chart showing the collapse in US same-store sales over the past five years.

Same-store sales represent sales at all McDonald’s restaurants open at least 13 months, including those temporarily closed.

On Monday, McDonald’s also announced that its fourth-quarter results would most likely be affected by the continued negative top-line performance, as well as a $0.07 to $0.10 per share earnings impact because of a supply issue in China and a $0.07 to $0.09 per share earnings impact because of the strength of the US dollar.

In a statement, McDonald’s said it was “diligently working to enhance its market, simplify the menu, and implement a more locally driven organizational structure to increase relevance with consumers.”

The disappointing numbers from McDonald’s come as the chain faces increasing competition from restaurants like Chipotle, and last week we noted that even the Federal Reserve’s field work on the US economy showed the consumer shift toward outlets like Chipotle and away from chains like McDonald’s.

Business Insider’s Ashley Lutz reported that in a recent call with investors, McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson noted the shift in consumer attitudes that have plagued the fast food giant, and almost exactly described what it’s like to eat at Chipotle.

“Customers want to personalize their meals with locally relevant ingredients,” Thompson said. “They also want to enjoy eating in a contemporary inviting atmosphere. And they want choices; choices in how they order, choices in what they order and how they’re served.”

There are more than 600,000 ways to order food at Chipotle.

In the third quarter, Chipotle’s same-store sales rose 19.8%. McDonald’s same-store-sales fell 3.3% over the same period.