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Brewers' sales dropped in the first quarter of 2018 as Americans swapped cold beers for hard alcohol, reports the Wall Street Journal.
Why it matters, per the Journal: "Alcohol consumption overall is stalling. That has intensified a fight between brewers, distillers and winemakers for a more limited pool of drinkers. In that booze battle, beer has been losing out, especially among younger drinkers."
Beer sales in Q1, by the numbers:
- "Molson Coors said its U.S. sales fell 5.8%, driven by a 3.8% drop in domestic brand volumes. That sent its share price tumbling 15% in a single day, to a four-year low."
- Anheuser-Busch InBev "said its volumes fell 4.1% in North America, partly because of weakness in the company’s core Bud and Bud Light brands."
- "Heineken said its volumes fell by a high-single-digit percentage in a declining U.S. beer market, without being specific."