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National Restaurant Association - Restaurant sales dip slightly in June after record high

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Restaurant sales dip slightly in June after record high

Preliminary figures from the U.S. Census released today show that restaurant sales volume slowed slightly in June after hitting a record-high in May. Eating and drinking place sales totaled $46.8 billion on a seasonally-adjusted basis in June, down from May’s $47 billion, but up more than $100 million from the previous sales volume peak in March.

“The recent strong sales performance may be tied to general improvements in the economy and consumer confidence, as well as the relief from the colder-than-normal spring weather experienced in many parts of the country,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of research for the National Restaurant Association.

“Despite the decline, restaurant industry sales volume in June is the second-highest on record after May, indicating that the industry remains on track for growth in the second half of 2014,” he added.

Restaurant sales posted gains in eight of the last 12 months, with the strongest increases registering in October and November 2013 (1.6 percent) and March 2014 (1.7 percent). June 2014 showed a modest 0.3 percent decline, while May registered a 0.9 percent increase over the previous month.

Eating and drinking place sales have reached nearly $278.6 billion in the first six months of this year, according to the Census’ preliminary data.

Looking forward, restaurant operators remain generally optimistic that their sales environment will improve. In the NRA’s June 2014 Tracking Survey, 50 percent of restaurant operators expect to have higher sales in six months (compared to the same period in the previous year), the strongest level in nearly two years. At 64 percent, fine dining operators are the most optimistic about sales growth.

For detailed results of the NRA's monthly Industry Tracking Survey, visit Restaurant TrendMapper (subscription reqiuired). 

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