After opening for al fresco dining after months of lockdown and economic hardship, US restaurants are recovering, but at an Ice Age pace. A new report from S&P Global Market Intelligence found that the recovery in sales and employment slowed in August.
"Sales in the competitive industry in August were down about 15% year-over-year, causing the US restaurant industry to lose $ 240 billion in sales by the end of the year, according to the National Restaurant Association," the S&P said – Report written by Michael O & # 39; Connor and Chris Hudgins.
The authors continue: "In the coming months, and likely through 2021, the US restaurant industry's recovery will look more like a sluggish spike than a rebound to what many have been hoping for before COVID sales, according to a September 9 intelligence report. The number of seats in the US was down 51% year over year from September 15, reported restaurant reservation platform OpenTable. "
However, there are light spots within these numbers. The decline in sales in August was not as steep as in the previous months. Revenue fell 19.4% year over year in July and 22.1% in June. Additionally, stocks of most of the largest publicly traded restaurant companies rose for the month ended September 15, and "the odds that publicly traded restaurants may fail in recent months seem to have eased somewhat," said S&P Global.
Still, the problems with restaurant retailing are serious. Marcus & Millichap noted that many of the nearly 400,000 full-service restaurants were doing business before the coronavirus pandemic will fight to survive with more than 100 million square feet of space at risk of being re-let.