McDonald's global same-store sales rise 7.7 percent in November, US sales rise 4.5 percent

NEW YORK (AP) -- Consumers hungry for cheap meals boosted worldwide sales at McDonald's Corp.'s established locations by 7.7 percent in November, more proof of how the fast-food leader is thriving in a downturn that has eaten into sales at its competitors.

Even recession-weary consumers in the U.S. were enticed by the Golden Arches during the month. U.S. same-store sales -- or sales at locations open at least a year -- rose 4.5 percent from the same month a year earlier, the company said Monday.

The Oak Brook, Ill.-based chain said the increase came from strong sales of breakfast items, chicken sandwiches and the chain's value menu options. It comes even as U.S. consumers increasingly opt for eating at home to conserve cash.

"I think what you're seeing is that McDonald's has so far been relatively immune to the recession," said David Morris, senior analyst at consumer research firm Mintel.

The past few months have been difficult ones for the restaurant industry as the now yearlong recession deepened. Restaurants have seen traffic decline traffic as consumers curb their spending, and have faced higher ingredient costs that have shrunk margins.