Business: Putting the Happy Back in the Meal

McDonald’s, the world’s largest fast food chain restaurant, reported big losses for the 2014 fourth quarter. The company said, after reporting falling earnings and sales on Friday, that it will take action to bring customers back and save money. The chain plans to slow down openings of new restaurants and also change their menus so that they can offer customers more ways to customize their orders. One of the company’s biggest problems has been new competition- smaller franchises such as Chipotle offer higher quality food at the same price point. McDonald’s is going to combat this by trying to change negative perceptions that people have about the healthiness of their food. “We know that when our customers feel good about us and about eating at McDonald’s they visit us more often,” President and CEO Don Thompson said. After it came out last year that one of the chains regular suppliers had been repackaging expired meat in China, business there took a huge hit, but the chain expects to recover in three to six months.  At the end of last year, McDonald’s had earned $1.1 billion, or $1.13 per share. That compares with $1.4 billion, or $1.40 per share, a year earlier.

Contributor: Johanna Hartman

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