National Restaurant Association’s comprehensive index of restaurant activity stood below 100 for the 16th 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 97.5 in February, up 0.1 percent from its January level.
Restaurant operators reported negative same-store sales for the ninth consecutive month in February. Twenty-nine percent of restaurant operators reported a same-store sales gain between February 2008 and February 2009, down from 31 percent who reported a sales gain in January. Fifty-six percent of operators reported a same-store sales decline in February, up slightly from 55 who reported negative sales in January.
Restaurant operators also reported negative customer traffic levels in February, with results on par with the January performance. Twenty-two percent of restaurant operators reported an increase in customer traffic between February 2008 and February 2009, matching the proportion who reported similarly in January. Fifty-nine percent of operators reported a traffic decline in February, also unchanged from January.
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