Thursday, January 01, 2015

Restaurant Performance Index shows Expansion in November

by Bill McBride on 1/01/2015 11:24:00 AM

Happy New Year! I did my part last night to help the restaurant index for December :-)

Here is a minor indicator I follow from the National Restaurant Association: Restaurant Performance Index Remains in Positive Territory

Buoyed by positive sales and traffic and an optimistic outlook among restaurant operators, the National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) remained in positive territory in November. The RPI – a monthly composite index that tracks the health of and outlook for the U.S. restaurant industry – stood at 102.1 in November, down slightly from its October level of 102.8. November marked the 21st consecutive month in which the RPI stood above 100, which signifies expansion in the index of key industry indicators.

“The RPI registered a modest decline in November, as sales and customer traffic results were somewhat softer than their solid October levels,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the Research and Knowledge Group for the Association. “However, a majority of restaurant operators still reported higher same-store sales in November, and they are increasingly optimistic that business conditions will continue to improve in the months ahead.”

Overall, the RPI topped the 102 level for the second consecutive month in November, the first such occurrence in nearly nine years,” Riehle added.
emphasis added
Restaurant Performance Index Click on graph for larger image.

The index decreased to 102.1 in November, down from 102.8 in October. (above 100 indicates expansion).

Restaurant spending is discretionary, so even though this is "D-list" data, I like to check it every month. This is another solid reading - and it is likely restaurants are benefiting from lower gasoline prices.