Raw Data Report: Fast Food Restaurants

Includes: BH, NATH, WEN, YUM
by: TickerMine

Each day, Wall Street is flooded with stock research offering a multitude of conflicting investment opinions. As such, TickerMine is not in the business of providing more opinions. We believe that accurate raw data points can be used to gain insight in to the stock selection and valuation process.

69% of Polled Taco Bell (NYSE:YUM) Stores Say Menu Specials Do Not Bolster Business

Tickermine conducted another survey on YUM Brands this week; owner of Long John Silver's, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut restaurant chains. We consulted Taco Bell and approached 35 stores, asking when they were busiest, what their specials were for that week, whether these have generated more business, what was the most popular menu item and how long has it been cited on their boards? Lunch was the more popular mealtime apparently with 25 respondents or 71% and dinner was cited 10 times or by 29% of those polled. Twelve respondents or 34% reported having no specials this week. This was the majority. 11 respondents or 31% reported having a Bacon Club Chalupa special. Four respondents or 11% reported having the Big Bell Box Meal special. Another 11% said their special was the Cheesy Double Beef Burrito. Three respondents or 9% said their special was the $.99 gordita and one respondent or 3% of those polled said this week's special was the 3 for 2 off the value menu special. Most respondents, 24 or 69% of those polled, did not think the specials drew extra business and only 11 or 31% thought that the specials helped. The most popular item on the menu included the Bacon Club Chalupa, the Big Bell Box Meal and the Soft Tacos, each cited by 14% of those polled. The Burrito supreme and Taco supreme were each cited by 11% of respondents. The Chicken Burrito and Grilled Stuffed Burrito each received 3 mentions or 9% and the following each received 2 mentions by 9% of those polled: Bean Burrito, Chili Cheese Burrito and the Gordita Supreme. None of these meals are particularly new however. 28 respondents or 80% of those polled said these menu items had been around for a long time. Seven respondents or 20% said they were new. All but one respondent said their restaurant had been around longer than a year (97%).

70% of Steak n Shake (SNS) Restaurants Say Menu Specials Do Not Help Generate Business

Tickermine researchers surveyed Steak n Shake restaurants this week after the Steak n Shake Company fielded bad reports on Wall Street. Revenue fell by 6% to $190.5 million and the company swung to a net loss of $0.10 a share compared to last year's profit. Our researchers asked which shift was busier; lunch or dinner? What specials existed this week and have these specials helped increase business? What is the most popular menu item and how long has it been cited on the menu? 30 locations were consulted across the country. Lunch was the busiest shift for 60% or 18 of those we polled and dinner was cited as busiest by 12 respondents or 40%. Six respondents or 20% said they did have special menu items this week, 24 respondents or 80% said there were none. (The specials included a double steak burger for $2.49, a spicy chicken sandwich and milk shakes were 25% off with any meal.) Of those interviewed, 21 respondents or 70% said the specials did not help increase their business. Only nine respondents or 30% thought that the specials brought more customers in. The most popular menu item was unanimously the steak burger. This was the choice of all 30 respondents, and all 30 respondents or 100% of those polled said that the steak burger had been on the menu for a long time.

Regular Hot Dogs Still a Best Seller at Nathan's Famous (NASDAQ:NATH)

Tickermine recently polled 35 Nathan's locations nationwide. One of the questions we asked was about the most popular menu item. The tried and true regular hot dog garnered 74% of responses. Other queries elicited the information that the restaurants were busiest at lunch at 80% of locations, that none of the locations were new (i.e. less than a year old) and that almost half of them (43%) were in a mall or near another fast food restaurant. Additionally, we found out that 71% of respondents thought that people chose to eat at Nathan's for the menu and 20% for the atmosphere. The average check is $14 with 66% of total bills less than $15 and the rest (34%) in the $16-$25 range. A majority (54%) of locations indicated that they were busier than last year and 40% said they were the same as last year.

The Spicy Baconator Sandwich Sells Better Than New Spicy Chicken Go Wrap at Wendy's (NYSE:WEN)

Wendy's International Inc., the burger restaurant chain was consulted by Tickermine researchers this month. We asked people at 31 locations whether lunch or dinner was busier, whether the Spicy Baconator sandwich was still helping business, what were the most popular menu items, and how old their store was? Lunch was busier for 29 respondents or 94% of those polled, while two people or only 6% reported dinner as the busier shift. 18 respondents or 58% said business was no busier from the Spicy Baconator sandwich being on the menu. 13 or 42%, however, felt that business had risen as a result. Cheese burgers were cited as the most popular menu item by 16 respondents (52%), the Spicy Baconator was cited nine times (29%), the new Spicy Chicken Go wrap only got four mentions (13%), while French Fries and the Home-style Chicken Fillet with each mentioned once or by 3% of those polled. We thought it was interesting that the new Spicy Chicken Go wrap was not doing as well as the more gimmicky bacon sandwich. 30 people or 97% said the location had been around for more than a year. Only one person or 3% said theirs was new.