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    McDonald's Chairman to Retire at Year's End

    CHICAGO - Just nine months after asking him to stay on the job until 2005, struggling fast food giant McDonald's Corp. is saying goodbye to its chairman and chief executive, Jack Greenberg.

    CHICAGO - Just nine months after asking him to stay on the job until 2005, struggling fast food giant McDonald's Corp. is saying goodbye to its chairman and chief executive, Jack Greenberg.

    The company said Thursday that Greenberg, 60, has decided to retire at the end of this year after 21 years at McDonald's, which is based in Oak Brook, Ill. Pressure for him to leave has been building as McDonald's reported lower earnings in seven of the past eight quarters.

    The McDonald's board tapped president and vice chairman, Jim Cantalupo, 59, to take over the top two spots.

    "In every company's history, there is a time when it is appropriate to pass the baton and give a new management team the opportunity to lead, and that time has come at McDonald's," Greenberg said in a statement released by the company.

    McDonald's, mired in a deep two-year slump, recently announced it is slowing its expansion pace as it grapples with a crowded restaurant market, sluggish economy and complaints about poor service. The company operates 30,000 restaurants in 118 countries.

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