nina | July 30th, 2013 - 9:00 am

Some restaurants have good news: Business is booming. Hiring is now in the budget.

Fresh crews streaming into restaurants lifted the number of leisure and hospitality jobs to a record 14.2 million in June. Hiring is 80 percent stronger this year than in 2012. The sector now accounts for about 10.5 percent of the nation’s workforce, also a record since the government started tracking the jobs in 1939.

We’re definitely seeing that people are coming out more frequently, and we’re seeing a growth in transactions. 

The looser spending that is lubricating date-night bar tabs and higher traffic at casual-dining restaurants also is paying off for investors. This year, share prices have risen 28 percent at Starbucks, 29 percent at Dunkin’ Brands and 52 percent at Sonic, all far exceeding the 19 percent advance in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

Sales at restaurants and bars will reach a record $461.3 billion this year, a 3.8 percent gain from 2012, the National Restaurant Association in Washington estimates.

Even with the U.S. unemployment rate stuck above 7 percent for a 55th straight month in June, the economy has regained 6 million jobs in recent years. That’s 6 million more people who can afford to go out.

Source:, 7.24.2013

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