A Massive Shift Is Underway in the Restaurant Industry



A Massive Shift Is Underway in the Restaurant Industry

Wednesday’s retail sales report was disappointing, missing economists’ expectations and raising concerns over the outlook for the holiday shopping season.

Within the retail sales report, however, was an interesting nugget that may be worrying for America’s major restaurant chains.

The percentage of retail sales devoted to bars and restaurants compared with food and beverage stores was nearly the smallest gap in decades, according to Bespoke Investment Group.

“With Bars and Restaurants accounting for 11.97% of total sales and Food and Beverage Stores accounting for 12.84%, the spread between the two is narrowing,” Bespoke wrote in a note following Wednesday’s report. “At the current level of 0.87, this month’s spread is the fifth narrowest on record, and the only four smaller monthly readings also occurred in 2016.”

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