May Restaurant Performance Index Reached 101.4

Continued positive sales drive seventh consecutive month of expansion among the National Restaurant Association's Index of key foodservice industry indicators.

The National Restaurant Association's Restaurant Performance Index reached 101.4 in May, the seventh consecutive month it exceeded 100, which indicates expansion in the index of key industry indicators. May's mark of 101.4 did represent a slight 0.2 point decline when compared to April.

The Current Situation Index, which measures current trends in four industry indicators (same-store sales, traffic, labor and capital expenditures), stood at 100.8 in May, down 0.2 percent from April's level of 101.0. Key data points from the Current Situation Index include:

  • Sixty-one percent of restaurant operators reported a same-store sales gain between May 2011 and May 2012, up from 57 percent who reported a sales gain in April. This marks the twelfth consecutive month in which operators reported an increase in same store sales. Meanwhile, 28 percent of operators reported lower same-store sales in May, up 3 percent from April.
  • Forty-two percent of restaurant operators reported higher customer traffic levels between May 2011 and May 2012, down from 46 percent who reported positive traffic in April. In contrast, 39 percent of operators reported lower customer traffic levels in May, up from 30 percent in April.
  • Forty-six percent of operators said they made a capital expenditure for equipment, expansion or remodeling during the last three months, up 2 percent from April.

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 102.0 in May, down slightly from April's level of 102.2. Key data points from the Expectations index include:

  • Forty-eight percent of restaurant operators expect to have higher sales in six months (compared to the same period in the previous year), down slightly from 52 percent who reported similarly last month.
  • Twenty percent of restaurant operators plan to increase staffing levels in six months (compared to the same period in the previous year), while only 8 percent said they expect to reduce staffing levels in six months.
  • Fifty-five percent of restaurant operators plan to make a capital expenditure for equipment, expansion or remodeling in the next six months, up from 52 percent who reported similarly last month.
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