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Takeout Spurs Growth for Casual Dining Restaurants

Denny's The casual dining sector, which has been reporting red ink for years, surprised industry watchers in October with positive sales figures. Still, after a few past false positives that went nowhere, can these latest figures really be taken as a sign of better times ahead for the long suffering sector?

But there’s reason to believe that the 1.4-percent, same-store sales growth the segment reported in October, according to the monthly MillerPulse Index, was the most hopeful sign for such chains in years.

The reason is, primarily, the same one that caused such chains to lose all of that business in the first place: Convenience.

Consumers, it seems, have been changing how they use casual-dining chains: They are increasingly taking their food with them instead of dining in. And restaurants have finally figured out how to take advantage. — Jonathan Maze, Nation's Restaurant News

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