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U.S. Restaurant Industry Remains Sluggish, Uncertain, In July

August 31, 2010: 12:21 PM EST
The National Restaurant Association says that July restaurant activity “remained essentially flat,” thanks to weak sales, depressed traffic levels and “a deteriorating outlook among restaurant operators.” The NRA’s index, which tracks restaurant industry health, was down 0.1 percent from June to 99.4, the fourth consecutive drop. The index, whose “steady-state” level is 100 points, was below 100 for three straight months, indicating “contraction of key industry indicators,” despite some recent signs of improvement in short-term outlook. “Restaurant operators continued to report declines in same-store sales and customer traffic in July, and their previously-optimistic outlook for sales growth and the economy softened in recent months,” NRA said. Only 38 percent of restaurateurs expect higher sales in six months, down from 42 percent last month.
National Restaurant Association, "Restaurant Performance Index: July 2010", Report, National Restaurant Association (July 2010), August 31, 2010, © NRA
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