mcdonalds signThere's some good news for fast food lovers.

With a tight economy forcing consumers to eat at home instead of going out, fast food chains are slashing their prices to keep cash registers ringing. And the slashing trend should continue in 2010, according to USA Today.

McDonald's is rolling out a dollar breakfast menu in January. Fast food rival Burger King is already luring customers with its $1 double cheeseburgers. Taco Bell is going even lower, offering an 89-cent, beefy, 5-layer burrito that goes on sale in two weeks.
We already discussed the grim fast food industry outlook at Walletpop, when we first reported rumors of McDonald's $1 breakfast menu. This week, McDonald's reported a 0.6% drop in U.S. same-store sales, possibly triggering the dollar menu announcement. The fast food industry, which was initially benefiting from the economic slowdown, is fast becoming a victim of it. McDonald's blamed unemployment for its woes. Morningstar restaurant analyst R.J. Hottovy told the Digital Journal that job growth is needed to get things turned around.

Until then, the price chopping at your neighborhood fast food eatery could continue as the chains compete with each other for customers. Of course, it's good news for the consumer, but don't forget to watch that waistline.

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