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The Bottom Line

Jonathan Maze The Bottom Line

Restaurant Business Executive Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Maze is a longtime industry journalist who writes about restaurant finance, mergers and acquisitions and the economy, with a particular focus on quick-service restaurants. He writes daily about the factors influencing the operating environment, including labor and food costs and various industry trends such as technology and delivery.

Jonathan has been widely quoted in media publications such as the New York Times and the Washington Post and has appeared on CNBC, Yahoo Finance and NPR. He writes a weekly finance-focused newsletter for Restaurant Business, The Bottom Line, and is the host of the weekly podcast “A Deeper Dive.”


At McDonald’s, low-income customers show signs of weakness

The Bottom Line: Tucked in the company’s earnings are signs that some consumers are cutting back. The burger giant’s executives believe they need to have some value to keep them coming.


The second frozen yogurt craze continues its long decline

The Bottom Line: Pinkberry and other chains, which were all the rage a decade ago, continue to close locations as operators move on—just like the first frozen yogurt boom.

The Bottom Line: Companies quickly abandon operations in favor of selling them to franchisees. But keeping some locations can be better in the long run.

The Bottom Line: A Placer.ai analysis found customers are less willing to drive long distances to visit Sonic or The Cheesecake Factory, suggesting a quiet impact of inflation on dining habits.

The Bottom Line: Operators continue to say they’re getting more applications and filling positions. But they should not lose the lessons of the past two years.

The Bottom Line: Chick-fil-A and First Watch, two different chains, have proven that concepts can be successful by limiting their hours. Here’s why.

The Bottom Line: News that the streaming service lost subscribers last quarter, and the latest sale discussions involving the delivery firm, show consumers are leaving the house a lot more.

The Bottom Line: Jersey Mike’s, Tropical Smoothie, Dutch Bros and Raising Cane’s have enjoyed the strongest growth among the biggest chains. Some of the other winners might surprise you.

The Bottom Line: Biglari Holdings, the owner of Steak n Shake, defends a services agreement with its chairman’s investment fund and commits to making up prior investment losses.

The Bottom Line: Prices have slowed in recent months. Are operators getting religion on prices or is it a sign of a consumer pushback?

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