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France Puts the "McD'oh!" in McDonald's

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McDonald's (NYSE: MCD  ) fans aren't feeling too "vive la France" today. The burger giant's August same-store sales included a disappointing French component.

Overall, McDonald's comps increased 4.9% on a global basis. That included a reassuring 4.6% comps gain in the U.S., following weakness here earlier this year. The company credited the success of its McCafe Real Fruit Smoothies and Frappes, which help it compete with the likes of Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX  ) , Jamba (Nasdaq: JMBA  ) , Panera (Nasdaq: PNRA  ) , and many other companies that sling specialty beverages. The Golden Arches seem to be gaining traction in frosty, fruity beverages, despite these solid competitors.

McDonald's Asia/Pacific, Middle East, and Africa segment didn't look too shabby, either, with a 7.8% comps increase. (Don't forget McDonald's interesting plans for the Indian market.)

If some investors are choking, it's because the fast-food giant's European segment showed relative weakness, with a mere 2.2% increase in comps. The French market is the sluggish culprit, offsetting stronger sales in the U.K. and Russia.  

Regardless, McDonald's has been hitting on all cylinders for quite some time now, seemingly immune to any serious threat from fast-food competitors like Burger King (NYSE: BKC  ) (which is going private), Sonic (Nasdaq: SONC  ) , and Wendy's/Arby's (NYSE: WEN  ) . Its shares recently hit a new 52-week high, reflecting the company's sustained strong performance despite ugly economic headwinds.  

Don't bet against McDonald's; it's a solid stock for long-term portfolios. A little pessimism here and there on monthly numbers like these simply serves up a cheaper, tastier price for prospective investors.

Starbucks is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor choice.

Alyce Lomax owns shares of Starbucks. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. True to its name, The Motley Fool is made up of a motley assortment of writers and analysts, each with a unique perspective; sometimes we agree, sometimes we disagree, but we all believe in the power of learning from each other through our Foolish community. The Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (3) | Recommend This Article (6)

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Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On September 09, 2010, at 3:57 PM, mikecart1 wrote:

    I could of told you that this was going to happen. I was in Paris a couple of years ago and the French ain't feeling the modified menu MCD has going on over there. I was also sickened after eating there and spent the last 5 days in Paris with a fever.

  • Report this Comment On September 09, 2010, at 4:10 PM, nontechie wrote:

    OMG!! Frenchmen would rather have a croque monsieur than a Big Mac. STOP THE PRESSES!

    Talk about "D'Oh".

  • Report this Comment On September 09, 2010, at 8:08 PM, mberan wrote:

    Sorry mikecart1, food poisoning does not give you a fever. McD France had a heavy promotion going on in 2009 so they were going against big numbers this August. Buy the stock now as it's down a couple of bucks It'll be back up in a couple of days. Too much strength and BK's going to be bought soon and they'll continue to have to deal with their Operators suing the company.

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