Foodservice Equipment Reports

NRA RPI, Both Cap-Ex Markers, Fell In July

In spite of a decent gain in traffic in July, six of the components of the National Restaurant Association's Restaurant Performance Index fell during the month, including both indicators of capital spending. Still, the overall index held at 101, well above the 100 level that signals the tipping point between expansion and contraction. It was the 17th consecutive month the index has been in expansion territory.

In the Current Situation Index, which fell 0.1 point to 100.7, the traffic indicator registered a strong full point gain. But the other three Current Situation indicators fell. Same-store sales were off 0.3 point. Both the labor indicator, which tracks the number of employees and average employee hours, and the marker tracking capital spending activity during the past three months fell 0.6 point. Half of operators surveyed said they made a purchase for equipment or facilities, down from 53% in June. The current cap-ex indicator rested right at 100.

Operators remained quite upbeat about the prospects for same-store sales in six months. The indicator was flat, but at a very elevated 103.4. But again, the other three components of the Expectations Index fell. The staffing indicator dropped 0.7 point and the outlook for future business conditions fell 0.2 point. The indicator that tracks plans to make a capital buy during the next six months fell a full point to 100.9; 54% of surveyed operators said they planned a purchase, down from 59% in June and 62% in May.

The full NRA RPI can be accessed at restaurant.org.

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