America’s Most Popular Stores

5. Walgreen
> Index score, women: 105
> Index score, men: 94
> Store count: 8,309
> One-year stock-price change: Up 14.7%
> Store category: Drugstores

Walgreen Co. (NYSE: WAG) stores were most popular with African Americans and Americans older than 55 years of age, the highest of any store on the list. Wealthier Americans earning at least $100,000 were nearly 20% more likely to visit a Walgreen store compared to the average American. The company expects to close its purchase of Alliance Boots in the first quarter of next year, but it has said it will not move its headquarters offshore.

4. Starbucks
> Index score, women: 100
> Index score, men: 100
> Store count: 14,191
> One-year stock-price change: down 1.6%
> Store category: Restaurants

Individuals earning at least $100,000 were 58% more likely than the average American to visit a Starbucks, second only to Target among companies reviewed. Competition has greatly intensified for the morning coffee customers in recent years. And while Starbucks’ earnings and revenues are rising, its growth is slowing, and most of it is coming from overseas. In its last earnings report, the coffee chain said it would open about 650 stores in the U.S. in 2015, about half of which will be company-owned and the rest licensed. Of the company’s 21,366 worldwide stores, half are owned and half are licensed.

3. Subway
> Index score, women: 95
> Index score, men: 105
> Store count: 26,901
> One-year stock-price change: N/A
> Store category: Restaurants

Unlike the other businesses on this list, Subway is privately held by Doctors Associates Inc. Globally, the company has more than 43,000 locations. The sandwiches are more favored by men, with Americans between the ages of 18 and 54 slightly more likely to eat there compared to the average American.

2. McDonald’s
> Index score, women: 97
> Index score, men: 103
> Store count: 14,278
> One-year stock-price change: Down 1.2%
> Store category: Restaurants

McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD) trails Subway in the number of stores both globally and in the U.S. The fast food chain also attracts far fewer customers who earn more than $100,000 compared to Subway. Individuals earning at least $100,000 were 20% less likely to visit a McDonald’s than the average American. The company’s recent struggles to grow same-store sales in the U.S. have not paid off, even though McDonald’s is the heaviest advertising spender among the restaurants, ranking 26th among all advertisers in 2013 with a total expenditure of $1.43 billion.

1. Walmart
> Index score, women: 106
> Index score, men: 93
> Store count: 4,344
> One-year stock-price change: Up 5.3%
> Store category: Discount stores

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) is by far the largest company on this list, with more than $334 billion in U.S. retail sales in 2013, dwarfing the second largest retailer, Target, which posted revenues of $71 billion. Americans who make more than $100,000 a year are 11% less likely than an average American to visit a Walmart store, and Asian Americans are 32% less likely to visit the stores. Of the stores on this list, Walmart spent the most on advertising, $1.83 billion.

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