McDonald's Corp reported a lower-than-expected rise in global August sales at established restaurants on Friday, with Asia turning lower on a big drop in Japan and the United States and Europe also missing expectations.

The world's largest hamburger chain, whose shares fell nearly 3 percent, said sales at restaurants open at least 13 months rose 3.5 percent worldwide. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters were looking for an increase of 4.3 percent.

Same-restaurant sales rose 3.9 percent in the United States and 2.7 percent in Europe, McDonald's largest market. They missed analysts' growth estimates of 4 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively.

The company reported a 0.3 percent decline Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa, while Wall Street had forecast a rise of 3.5 percent.

Asia was dragged down by a sharp decline in comparable sales in Japan, where consumers are still adjusting to the aftermath of the March earthquake and tsunami.

Oak Brook, Illinois-based McDonald's shares fell 2.8 percent to $86.10 in premarket trading.

McDonald's sales and profits for months have been the envy of the global fast-food industry, which means that the company is punished when results meet or miss expectations.

The company has been outpacing rivals like Wendy's Co , Burger King Corp and Yum Brands Inc's KFC by attracting a broader range of diners than fast-food's typical young adult males.

Earlier this week, Red Lobster and Olive Garden parent Darden Restaurants Inc warned that Hurricane Irene had dented its quarterly earnings by 2 cents per share.

But Irene had only minimal impact on McDonald's sales, a company spokeswoman said.

(Additional reporting Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)