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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Restaurant recovery proceeds slowly

Roughly 24% of adults came through the recession relatively unscathed… but the rest are still being very careful about spending their out-of-home dining dollars, according to a story that appeared today in Marketing Daily.   Citing research from NPD Group, the article indicates that a recovery is definitely underway in the restaurant category, but that consumers who are working with lower household incomes or rebuilding wealth are dining out less frequently, trading-down in terms of restaurant type, or even ordering fewer items.  (Click to link.)

Implications:  This article—and the restaurant category—provide a great example of how some attitudes and behaviors learned in response to the recent recession could linger for quite some time.  Many consumers were simply on “auto-pilot” when it came to spending decisions (or non-decisions); now, spending seems to be much more thoughtful and deliberate.

Mike Anderson, for the Elm Street Economics consumer trends blog. A service of The Center for Sales Strategy, Inc.

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