Restaurant owners are taking every opportunity to voice their concerns. The trade association New York City Hospitality Alliance surveyed 500 restaurants, finding 83% cannot pay their regular July rent, including 37% who cannot pay anything at all.
The same restaurateurs say that 71% of their landlords have refused to waive any rent, 61% would not defer payments, and 90% have declined to formally renegotiate leases.
Respondents also say that outdoor seating is not sufficient to offset lost business from indoor dining rooms.
“Our industry has been uniquely and financially devasted,” said the Alliance’s director, who suggested the following relief measures as necessary to sustain the industry.
These suggestions are in concord with the Restaurants Act of 2020, a $120 billion grant program pending Congressional approval. If passed, the bill would provide unprecedented support to restaurant owners, especially small businesses.
In fact, the first 14 days of funds would be reserved for restaurants with annual revenues of $1.5 million or less. Preference would be further given to female business owners, veterans, or minority-owned businesses.
Another survey by the Colorado Restaurant Association found that the typical restaurant has spent at least $4,500 on Personal Protective Equipment and that Colorado’s restaurants have shed 87,000 jobs during the coronavirus pandemic.
A separate survey today by payroll processing giant ADP estimates that restaurants, bars and hotels nationwide added just 38,000 jobs last month. The pollsters estimate that the entire U.S. economy added just 167,000 jobs in July, far less than June’s addition of 4.3 million or May’s addition of 3.3 million.
The U.S. economy still has 13 million fewer jobs than it had in February. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics will reveal its jobs report on Friday.
Consider the situation in Portugal, where the Association of Hospitality, Restaurants and Similars of Portugal released a new survey today. The results forecast that 43% of restaurants will declare insolvency or discontinue payroll during August. The pollsters surveyed 1,377 representative Portuguese restaurants and bars between July 31 and August 3. In July, 75% of the country’s catering companies reported losses worse than 40%.
According to analytics giant Nielsen, which surveyed 1,560 residents of Florida, California, New York and Texas between July 17-19, 40% of respondents had dined out during July. That was only a minor improvement from June’s 36%, or from the end of May’s 30%.
There are 49,988 new cases of COVID-19 and 1,107 deaths added in the U.S. since yesterday, lifting the total case count to 4.7 million to date. There are 53,151 patients currently hospitalized with the disease.