You've got to love short memories. Remember at the end of January, when McDonald's
January comps at McDonald's rose 5.7%, compared to a year-ago 4.9% increase. Though the U.S. market is trending weaker, with domestic comps rising only 1.9%, hungry consumers in Europe and the Asia/Pacific, Middle East, and Africa segments seem to be picking up the slack. Comps in those regions rose 8.2% and 7.8%, respectively. (Sweet, delicious foreign exposure!)
Many of McDonald's rivals are doing just fine, but they're hardly taking a bite out of McDonald's meaty momentum. Burger King
McDonald's last quarterly report, which revealed the weak December comps, dropped its shares by 6% that day, prompting plenty of hand-wringing that the fast food giant might not be quite so recession-proof. Naturally, the stock's now trading higher than it was before that little burst of panic.
Worrying about recent price fluctuations is short-sighted, short-term thinking. If you're in stocks for the long haul, last month's freakout over Mickey D's should illustrate that occasional hiccups offer opportunities to buy in (or get more shares) at tempting prices.
Given McDonald's generally hot stock performance, I can hardly blame its shareholders for getting spooked by any hint of negative news. But the company's still executing very well, still leading an industry that offers value-priced meals to budget-conscious consumers, and still paying a current dividend yield of 2.8%. In short, McDonald's still strikes me as a solid stock idea for investors. Temporary panics like last month's comps calamity only make it more appetizing.