Starbucks' Cafe Sales Growth Cools


Starbucks Corp's quarterly cafe sales growth missed analysts' estimates, cooling in all major markets and sending shares down almost 5 percent on Thursday.

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The world's largest coffee chain said global sales at company-owned cafes open at least 13 months in the fiscal third quarter ended June 26 rose 4 percent from the year-ago period. That was well short of the overall same-cafe sales gain of 5.6 percent analysts had expected, according to research firm Consensus Metrix.

The U.S.-dominated Americas region's sales at established cafes were up 4 percent, missing analysts' call for a gain of 6.1 percent. Those sales were up 7 percent in the second quarter and 9 percent in the first quarter.

Starbucks, which is investing in mobile ordering and payments to serve customers faster, has been under fire from employees who say a recent move to cut labor hours has hurt take-home pay, morale and customer service.

Starbucks shares fell 4.7 percent to $57.59 in extended trading.

(Reporting by Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; Editing by David Gregorio)