Plunging sales and customer traffic at restaurants is surely a sign of an improving economy. Right? If all those Americans were getting jobs, as reported by the BLS last week, why would restaurant traffic be plunging? Inquiring minds want to know. I thought consumer spending was strong. The MSM told me so. This couldn’t possibly have anything to do with rising gas prices and the $1,000 tax increase for the average household. Could it? It couldn’t be because of rising healthcare costs due to Obamacare. Could it? It couldn’t be because of rising tuition costs created by the Obama student loan frenzy. Could it? Just because the last time we saw a plunge of this magnitude the country was going into a deep recession, doesn’t mean we’re not really in a strong recovery. Right?
“Although restaurant operators reported softer same-store sales and customer traffic levels in December, they are cautiously optimistic about sales growth in the months ahead,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the Research and Knowledge Group for the Association. “However, operators remain decidedly pessimistic about the overall economy, with only 17 percent saying they expect business conditions to improve in the next six months.”