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Strong finish to the week but restaurant space largely traded sideways over the past seven days.

The momentum in restaurant stocks certainly seems to have slowed despite the strong performance on Friday.  Casual dining saw a more broad-based gain than quick service following the release of Malcolm Knapp’s Knapp Track sales data.  A few notable observations and news items:

  • Knapp Track data for November showed a sequential slowdown in sales for November on a one and two-year basis.  The print for November sales trends in casual dining was +0.9% vs final +1.6% in October.  Traffic also slowed on a two-year basis.  The print for November traffic in casual dining was -1% vs final -1.2% in October. 
  • Strong performance from CHUX to close out the week during which they announced the resignation of their CFO and the closing of 16 underperforming stores
  • MRT declined on strong volume.  This name has been on a tear over the past month
  • RT underperformed all casual dining stocks on high volume
  • DIN also declined on strong volume
  • SONC was the strongest performing restaurant stock on Friday.  On Tuesday it announced the repurchase of $62.5 million of its Class A-1 variable funding senior notes. 

TALES OF THE TAPE: CHUX, MRT, RT, DIN, SONC - stocks 1220

Howard Penney

Managing Director