The National Restaurant Association's Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) noted a moderate gain in January.
The RPI, which measures the health and outlook for the U.S. restaurant industry, was at 101.8 in January, up 0.7 percent from 101.1 in December. The health of the industry is measured at a neutral level of 100; values above 100 reflect a period of expansion, while anything below 100 represent contraction for key industry indicators.
January’s increase comes as the rebound from lower December levels. For the first time in two years, most restaurant operators reported gains in both same-store sales and customer traffic levels in the same month. Sixty-six percent of restaurant operators reported an increase in same-store sales from January 2019 to January 2020 and reported stronger customer traffic results. Those positive numbers mean that most restaurant operators are continuing to invest in their business. Fifty-two percent of operators reported making a capital expenditure for equipment, expansion, or remodeling during the past three months and 63 percent said they plan to make a capital expenditure sometime in the next six months.