Foodservice Equipment Reports

NRA’s Performance Index Hit Two-Year High In May

The National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Performance Index rose again in May, as same-store sales and traffic and operator expectations of future sales continued to improve. The overall index rose 0.4 point to 102.1, its highest reading since March 2012. May was also the 15th consecutive month the index has stood above 100. Index values above 100 signal expansion. One capital expenditure measure rose, while a second fell.

The Current Situation Index rose a robust 0.7 point to 102. The indicator tracking same-store sales jumped two points to reach 104.6, also the highest reading since March 2012. Customer traffic was up a more modest 0.4 point. The labor indicator, which tracks employee numbers vs. the same month the year prior, also rose strongly, posting a 0.9 point gain.

The Expectations Index was flat in May, remaining at 102.2, but matching its highest level in two years. The indicator for same-store sales in six months rebounded 0.6, following a 0.7 drop in April. This came despite a slight 0.2 point drop in the outlook for business conditions in the next six months. The staffing indicator also fell, down 0.3 point.

The indicator that tracks capital spending by operators during the past three months fell half a point after a sharp gain in April. It remained above the expansion-contraction tipping point at 100.6. The percentage of operators reporting a capital buy in May fell to 53% from 56% in April. The marker for operators planning a capital purchase during the next six months added 0.2 point to reach 102.3; 62% of operators plan a purchase.

The complete Restaurant Performance Index report can be found at restaurant.org.

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