Restaurant Capital Expenditures Remain Steady
Sep 30, 2010
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The National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) of U.S. restaurant activity was essentially unchanged from the previous three months, nor have restaurant operators significantly changed their pace of capital expenditures for equipment, expansion, or remodeling.

The RPI stood at 99.5 in August, essentially unchanged from the previous three months. An index standing below 100 signifies contraction in the index of key industry indicators.

Restaurant operators reported relatively steady capital spending levels in recent months. 44% of operators said they made a capital expenditure for equipment, expansion, or remodeling during the past three months, relatively unchanged from the levels reported in the previous three months.

Although their economic outlook softened in recent months, restaurant operators are holding relatively steady on plans for capital expenditures. 42% of restaurant operators plan to make a capital expenditure for equipment, expansion, or remodeling in the next six months, compared with 43% who reported similarly last month.

“Although the sales and traffic indicators remained soft in August, restaurant operators remain relatively optimistic that conditions will improve in the months ahead,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the Research and Knowledge Group for the association. “Restaurant operators’ outlook for sales growth improved somewhat in August, and their plans for capital spending activity held steady.”

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