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.”

Financing

Higher-end consumers may be slowing their spending

The Bottom Line: There is some evidence that higher-income consumers may be cutting back. Or maybe there was just some pent-up demand.

Financing

Stake your claim to the low-price market at your own risk

The Bottom Line: Subway and Burger King have staked their claims as value leaders in their respective segments. Recent events have highlighted the difficulties of that position.

The Bottom Line: Minneapolis Federal Reserve President Neel Kashkari suggested a 60% chance of a soft landing with one more rate hike. But "meaningfully higher" rates are also possible.

The Bottom Line: McDonald’s and its franchisees differ on the profitability of restaurants, but we can’t judge for ourselves because the company doesn’t release the data, like most franchise businesses.

The Bottom Line: The addition of the sandwich giant will make Roark a bigger player than McDonald's in the U.S. But its position in the sandwich market will not be all that unusual.

The Bottom Line: Restaurants have stepped off the pricing gas. But sales are slowing and traffic is weak, and more operators are turning to price promotions.

The Bottom Line: Fewer than 200 restaurant chains will be affected by the lowered threshold included in the compromise fast-food legislation.

The Bottom Line: Some executives of franchise chains are also franchisees. “I feel the pain when I make a decision to bring something in.”

The Bottom Line: Fast-food restaurants will have to pay $20 an hour under a compromise reached this week. How will operators pay for it?

The Bottom Line: The burger chain kicked off the plant-based, fast-food trend with the introduction of the menu item five years ago. While the trend has slowed at quick-service concepts, that doesn’t make the move any less important.

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