What’s Brewing: Overtime rules, Wage Hikes, Salt

It would be an understatement to say these are challenging times for the restaurant business, and, in particular, for the quick service sector. In fact, Dunkin’ franchise owners find themselves in the midst of a veritable superstorm of new government-mandated overtime rules, minimum wage hikes, family-leave requirements and now “voluntary” sodium disclosures as well. Possibly…

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3-Year OT Phase-In Filed

With the DOL overtime rule finalized and ready to take effect December 1st, there seemed to be little chance for relief from the coming doubling of the exemption threshold.  This past week however, the horizon was a bit less onerous as another possible legislative solution was filed in Congress.  Democratic Congressman Kurt Schrader (D-OR), along…

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Tale of Two Platforms

For those of us who watched the Republican Convention this week and plan to watch the Democratic National confab beginning Monday, there are a couple of contrasting platform positions you might want to be aware of.  Last week, business media in Ohio reported that advocates were pushing both national parties to adopt a Change.org petition…

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I have $15, Can I get $17? Do I Hear $21?

Like the successful auctioneer, advocates for increasing the minimum wage across the country just won’t settle on a number until the last of the “bidders” has fallen silent.  The Restaurant Opportunities Centers United (ROCU) is one of the union-funded front groups that have been instrumental in singling out and targeting the restaurant industry for minimum…

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What Have You Done For Me Lately?

As a case in point that minimum wage hikes are never enough, a few months ago, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney asked for businesses operating at the city-owned Philadelphia International Airport to raise the minimum pay for all full- or part-time workers there to $12 per hour.   After much negotiation, agreement was finally reached and new…

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$15/hour Moving in Baltimore

Down the road from Philadelphia and against the wishes of City Council President Bernard “Jack” Young, the Baltimore City Council Labor Committee has indicated initial approval for an ordinance that will mandate a $15/hour minimum wage by 2022.  At Tuesday’s work session on the proposal, Council President Young advised the committee that he would not…

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Florida Styrofoam Ban Goes to Court

The Florida Retail Federation this week brought a lawsuit against the City of Coral Gables challenging enforcement of its Styrofoam ban.  The local law authorized fines starting at $50 and increasing to $500 for a third violation within one year and $1,000 for subsequent violations.  Businesses were given until next month to phase out Styrofoam…

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Dunkin’ Doings

Dunkin delivered a lukewarm Q2 earnings report yesterday. Both Dunkin’ Donuts U.S . and Baskin Robbins U.S. registered fairly flat same store sales, Dunkin’ at +.5% and Baskin at +.6%, both less than expectations. DNKN company earnings per share beat expectations by $.01 but revenues missed by $4 million. Dunkin SSS was a miss vs.…

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Competitor News

Starbucks also held its earnings call yesterday at 5:00 PM EST.  While it enjoyed +4% positive US and global same store sales, global transactions were flat and disappointing to the investment markets.  Their revenue of $5.2 billion was off target by $130 million, but still represented a 6.6% increase year over year.  Earlier in the…

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Miscellaneous

With many caught up in the new Pokémon Go fad, McDonalds is making a major move by partnering with the game developer, Niantic, to make all McDonalds store in Japan a PokéStop.  A PokéStop is a location where players can have the Pokémon they have already captured battle each other.  The game, which uses a cell…

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