Fri, Jan. 9, 1:38 PM
- Restaurant same-store sales in Q4 rose at the fastest pace in six years, according to Black Box Intelligence.
- Same-store sales were 3.1% during December to accelerate past the 1.6% rise seen in November.
- If the slump in Q1 is backed out, restaurant comps for the year were up 1.3% after being negative in 2013.
- BBI notes lower fuel costs for consumers is a major factor in the return to growth.
- Earlier this week: Sonic Dec. comps +8.5%.
- Restaurant stocks: CAKE, CBRL, CMG, DPZ, DRI, EAT, JACK, PNRA, RRGB, RT, SBUX, SONC, WEN, BWLD, BDL, NATH, LUB, CHUY, BLMN, PZZA, TXRH, DENN, KKD, BBRG, DFRG, BOBE, RUTH, IRG, DIN, HABT, NDLS, PLKI, LOCO, YUM, KKD, BOBE, TAST, GTIM, FRSH, COSI, FRS, PBPB, FRGI, QSR, CBRL, BLMN, MFRD, ZOES, MCD, YUM.
Fri, Jan. 2, 2:54 PM
- Janney Capital Markets dived into the restaurant sector before pulling out its top two picks for 2015.
- Yum Brands (YUM -0.6%): Janney thinks the stock absorbed much of the downside risk news and could see activist investors arrive on the scene this year.
- Papa John's (PZZA +2.4%): The pizza chain is viewed as a beneficiary of an increased pace of consumer spending in the U.S.
Fri, Jan. 2, 9:10 AM
Dec. 24, 2014, 9:57 AM
- The restaurant industry will run up against soft comps in January and February due to last year's winter storms which were much worse than normal.
- Restaurant same-store sales will rise just over 2% for the full year, according to an estimate from the co-founder of the NRN-MillerPulse tracking survey.
- Technomic sees a 3% growth in restaurant comps in 2015, while Fitch Ratings has an outlook for 2% to 3%.
- On the cost side, commodity prices for chicken, cheese, wheat, and pork are all expected to moderate. However, beef prices are seen increasing 4% to 8%.
- Minimum wage increases in many state kick in on January 1 which could impact the bottom line for many chains.
- Fresh IPOs, concept acquisitions, and leveraged buyouts care expected to be major themes in 2015, according to analysts.
- CEOs on the hot seat include Don Thompson at McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) and Nigel Travis at Dunkin' Brands (NASDAQ:DNKN).
- Restaurant stocks: CAKE, CBRL, CMG, DPZ, DRI, EAT, JACK, PNRA, RRGB, RT, SBUX, SONC, WEN, BWLD, THI, BDL, NATH, LUB, BKW, CHUY, BLMN, PZZA, TXRH, DENN, KKD, BBRG, DFRG, BOBE, RUTH, IRG, DIN, HABT, NDLS, PLKI, LOCO, YUM, KKD, BOBE, TAST, GTIM, FRSH, COSI, FRS, PBPB, FRGI, QSR.
Dec. 11, 2014, 2:43 PM
- Local KFC's within China will be given more autonomy in offering menu items and setting prices, says Joey Wat, Yum's (YUM +2.5%) new president of KFC China, noting consumers in the big cities have higher incomes and different preferences than those in smaller towns.
- Other changes include things like premium coffee, more use of Chinese celebrities in ads, free Wi-Fi, and a reinvigorated child's menu.
- Investor & Analyst Conference webcast
- November same-store sales in China are looking down 15% from a year ago, says the company, but December shouldn't be as bad. Average restaurant sales three years ago in China were $1.7M annually, a number that's since fallen to just $1.35M.
- Meanwhile, dealReporter says activist investor 3G Capital is sniffing around the company.
- Previously: Is Yum Brands next for 3G? (Dec. 10, 2014)
Dec. 10, 2014, 9:10 AM
Dec. 10, 2014, 9:06 AM
- Yum Brands (NYSE:YUM) is a logical acquisition candidate for 3G Capital, according to analysis from RBC Capital Markets.
- The investment firm notes 3G has shown an appetite for stepping up acquisitions within the same sector.
- 3G is the majority shareholder of Burger King Worldwide which is set to merge with Tim Hortons.
- YUM -4.6% premarket after disappointing guidance.
Dec. 9, 2014, 5:36 PM
Dec. 9, 2014, 4:39 PM
- Though YUM's Chinese same-store sales are recovering from the summer hit they took from the OSI scandal, they're doing so "at a slower pace than expected." As a result, Yum now expects mid-single digit 2014 EPS growth, down from prior guidance of 6%-10% (already lowered). China Division same-store sales are expected to be down by a mid-single digit clip.
- In addition, Yum is only guiding for 2015 EPS growth of "at least 10%;" consensus is for EPS to grow 17% to $3.78. "Meaningful upside opportunity" exists if Chinese sales rebound faster than expected.
- Yum respectively forecasts China Division, KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell op. profit growth of "at least 15%," 10%, 10%, and 6%. 2,100 gross new international units will be built next year (700 in China), and the capex budget is at $1.2B.
- The fast food giant plans to lower its share count by 2% in 2015 via buybacks.
Dec. 8, 2014, 11:55 AM
Dec. 2, 2014, 8:56 PM
- Though federal legislation on a minimum wage increase is stalled in Congress, there's still movement on the hourly payment front.
- Organized protests at Wal-Mart stores on Black Friday were more widespread than in recent years.
- The city council of Chicago approved a gradual increase of the minimum wage in the city to $13 per hour by 2019.
- The pay hike in the Windy City follows similar measures in Seattle, San Francisco, and Oakland.
- Earlier this week, a state senator is California introduced legislation to boost the minimum wage in the state to $13 per hour by 2017.
- Related stocks: MCD, WMT, BKW, WEN, YUM, TGT.
Nov. 20, 2014, 5:40 PM
Nov. 20, 2014, 4:28 PM
Nov. 20, 2014, 10:45 AM
- The usual suspects topped a list of the businesses with the most foot traffic in October, compiled by location analytics firm Placed.
- The top five chains were Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), McDonald's (NYSE:MCD), Subway, Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX), and Walgreens (NYSE:WAG).
- Significant movers over the last month include KMart (NASDAQ:SHLD) +9 spots, KFC (NYSE:YUM) +6 spots, Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ:BBBY) -7 spots, and Costco (NASDAQ:COST) -6 spots.
Nov. 10, 2014, 1:37 PM
- Pizza Hut unveils a broad series of menu changes to hit stores on November 19.
- The biggest change is the large expansion of toppings and sauce options that customer will have for pizzas.
- The company will also see some rebranding efforts with a new logo and a more casual employee dress code.
- The Yum Brands (NYSE:YUM) chain has seen same-store sales decline for 8 straight quarters in the U.S.
Nov. 3, 2014, 2:57 PM
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