While current same-store sales remain positive, expectations for growth have steadily declined
Washington, DC (RestaurantNews.com) Although same-store sales and customer traffic remained positive in September, the National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) registered a modest decline. The RPI – a monthly composite index that tracks the health of and outlook for the U.S. restaurant industry – stood at 101.4 in September, down slightly from a level of 101.5 in August. Despite the decline, September represented the 31st consecutive month in which the RPI stood above 100, which signifies expansion in the index of key industry indicators.
For the full outlook on the restaurant industry, view the Restaurant Performance Index here: http://www.restaurant.org/RPI
“The RPI’s current situation indicators continued to illustrate growth in September, as both same-store sales and customer traffic remained positive,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the Research and Knowledge Group for the Association. “However, restaurant operators are more cautious about business conditions in the months ahead, as the proportion expecting a sales increase fell to a two-year low.”
The RPI is constructed so that the health of the restaurant industry is measured in relation to a steady-state level of 100. Index values above 100 indicate that key industry indicators are in a period of expansion, while index values below 100 represent a period of contraction for key industry indicators. The Index consists of two components – the Current Situation Index and the Expectations Index.
Current Situation Index
The Current Situation Index, which measures current trends in four industry indicators (same-store sales, traffic, labor and capital expenditures), stood at 101.3 in September – down slightly from a level of 101.4 in August. Despite the modest dip, the Current Situation Index remained above 100 for the 19th consecutive month, which signifies expansion in the current situation indicators.
The Expectations Index, which measures restaurant operators’ six-month outlook for four industry indicators (same-store sales, employees, capital expenditures and business conditions), stood at 101.4 in September – down slightly from a level of 101.6 in August. However, September represented the 35th consecutive month in which the Expectations Index stood above 100, which indicates restaurant operators remain generally positive about overall business conditions in the months ahead.
About the Restaurant Performance Index
The RPI is based on the responses to the National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Industry Tracking Survey, which is fielded monthly among restaurant operators nationwide on a variety of indicators including sales, traffic, labor and capital expenditures. The full report is available online at Restaurant.org/RPI.
The RPI is released on the last business day of each month, and a more detailed data and analysis can be found on Restaurant TrendMapper, the Association’s subscription-based web site that provides detailed analysis of restaurant industry trends.
Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises 1 million restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of 14 million employees. We represent the industry in Washington, D.C., and advocate on its behalf. We operate the industry’s largest trade show (NRA Show May 21-24, 2016, in Chicago); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF’s ProStart); as well as the Kids LiveWell program promoting healthful kids’ menu options. For more information, visit Restaurant.org and find us on Twitter @WeRRestaurants, Facebook and YouTube.