Friday, July 31, 2009

Restaurants: 22nd Consecutive Month of Traffic Declines in June

by Bill McBride on 7/31/2009 10:10:00 AM

Note: Any reading below 100 shows contraction for this index.

From the National Restaurant Association (NRA): Restaurant Industry Outlook Remained Uncertain In June as Restaurant Performance Index Declined for Second Consecutive Month

The restaurant industry’s economic challenges continued to persist in June, as the National Restaurant Association’s comprehensive index of restaurant activity declined for the second consecutive month. The Association’s Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) – a monthly composite index that tracks the health of and outlook for the U.S. restaurant industry – stood at 97.8 in June, down 0.5 percent from May and its 20th consecutive month below 100.

“While there are signs that suggest an improvement may be on the horizon, the latest figures indicate that the restaurant industry’s recovery has yet to gain a firm foothold,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of Research and Information Services for the Association. “Restaurant operators continued to report declines in same-store sales and customer traffic in June, and their outlook for sales growth in the months ahead remains mixed.”
...
Restaurant operators also reported negative customer traffic levels in June, marking the 22nd consecutive month of traffic declines.
emphasis added
Restaurant Performance Index Click on graph for larger image in new window.

Unfortunately the data for this index only goes back to 2002.

The restaurant business is still contracting, and although not contracting as fast as late last year, the pace of contraction has picked up over the last two months.

Someone must have eaten the green shoots.