Foodservice Wage Growth Continues To Outpace Average

Average hourly foodservice wages rose 4.1% for the 12 months ended in February, according to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This compares with a 2.6% increase for all private sector wages during the period.

The strongest gains continued to be at full-service and quick-service restaurants, which posted increases of 4.7% and 4.5% respectively for the past 12 months. Snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars saw wages increase 4.4%.

Still, the rate of wage increases in foodservice appears to be slowing slightly. The 4.1% jump for the past 12 months compares with 4.4% gain the previous two years. Increases at full-service and quick-service concepts have been running at 5% or better during the past two years.

In other data from the federal government, sales at eating and drinking places reached $58 billion on a seasonally adjusted basis in March, up 0.4% from the previous month. It was the fifth gain for sales during the past 12 months. For the 12 months, restaurant sales rose 3.1% or 0.6% after factoring out menu-price increases.

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