Here is a minor indicator I follow from the National Restaurant Association: RPI continues to show mixed results
As a result of softer sales and a dampened outlook among operators, the National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) declined for the second consecutive month. The RPI stood at 100.3 in June, down 0.3 percent.
“The uneven trend that the RPI followed during the first half of 2016 was due in large part to choppy same-store sales and customer traffic results,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of research for the National Restaurant Association.
“This uncertainly likely contributed to the Expectations Index dipping to a six-month low in June. However, it’s hard to draw definitive conclusions in either direction right at this point, because the indicators continue to send mixed signals,” Riehle said.
The index decreased to 100.3 in June, down from 100.6 in May. (above 100 indicates expansion).
Restaurant spending is discretionary, so even though this is “D-list” data, I like to check it every month.