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Don't Listen to the Starbucks Haters

Ignore the naysayers, Starbucks investors.

Shares in the coffee chain fell 5 percent Friday after it released quarterly sales figures Thursday that were a touch lower than what analysts were expecting. Wall Street seemed to just ignore the fact Starbucks earnings were in line with expectations, leading the company to raise the bottom end of its full-year outlook, and that sales at established locations rose by 6 percent globally and 7 percent in the U.S. from a year ago. Haters gonna hate.

But there are few restaurants or retailers that can claim those kinds of numbers these days. As I wrote last quarter, the last time Dunkin' Donuts posted sales growth beyond 5 percent was in 2012. For Walmart, it was 2005.

More importantly, though, were positive results from Starbucks' new loyalty program, despite boatloads of complaints in recent months. Customers (those vocal folks on Twitter, at least) were "furious" that Starbucks changed the way customers earned points for free food and drinks. Instead of earning points for each purchase made, customers...


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