A Restaurant Apocalypse Is Starting To Sweep Across America & That Is Bad News For The U.S. Economy

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You just have to look around and see what’s happening to the restaurants in your area to understand that the U.S. economy is headed in the wrong direction. When the economy is booming, restaurants are full and chains open more locations to expand their business. But when the economy is struggling, restaurants get increasingly emptier, and underperforming locations go belly up. Sadly, it seems that a “restaurant apocalypse” has started to sweep across the country this year.

Faced with higher living expenses, most households have very little discretionary income to spend as a result of inflated prices, and that’s particularly true for our young adults.

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Americans love to eat out, but these days about 60% are living paycheck to paycheck, and report experiencing financial distress. Without the extra dollars to spend at the end of each month, people are consuming less, and many sectors are hurting. The restaurant industry is being disproportionately hard hit by this trend.

According to data from Placer.ai, visits to sit-down restaurants were down nearly five percent in the past year. People just can’t afford to dinner out as much as they once did.

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Consequently, we’re witnessing a wave of restaurants closings that is growing larger all over the nation. Even in the Big Apple, many famous restaurants are being shut down.

Despite being known for its great fining spots, New York City has been facing a major decline in foot traffic in recent years. From December 2023 to January 2024 alone, more than 40 big restaurants and bars were shut down, with some owners saying business simply never picked up after COVID lockdowns in 2020.

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