DOES STARBUCKS HATE AMERICA?

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BY ALYCE LOMAX

OK, Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX) doesn’t really hate America, but its ardor for U.S. expansion has cooled. (Can you blame it? U.S. customers’ enthusiasm for Starbucks has grown equally tepid.) The coffee giant plans to slow down its expansion here while it accelerates store openings overseas — both notable but not surprising moves.

Sorry, folks — The Onion’s dreams of a Starbucks-within-a-Starbucks appear to be over in a venti way.

Starbucks’ quarterly net income fell 28% as U.S. consumers felt increasingly pinched by the weakening economy. The coffee giant had already warned us that this quarter wasn’t going to be fun. As far as new news goes, there’s that whole “Let’s get groovy, have a smoothie” drink option, which makes good breakfast conversation. But smoothies seem less than promising in smoothing things over, and they’re a little out of place amid returning CEO Howard Schultz’s otherwise coffee-centric focus.

Check back at Fool.com a little later today, when I’ll have caffeinated a bit more in preparation for a closer look at Starbucks’ quarter.

See Related: CRY SAN FRANCISCO A RIVER, STARBUCKS – This Mayor Stocks Only Peet’s Coffee for Home and Hearth

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