Treasury Secretary meets CEO of National Restaurant Association


U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Paul O’Neill met with National Restaurant Association President and Chief Executive Officer Steven C. Anderson and the CEOs of 17 other national business associations yesterday to discuss the nation’s economy and policies to strengthen the economic recovery.

During the meeting, held in the Secretary’s conference room at the Department of the Treasury, Anderson told O’Neill that the restaurant industry has shown resilience over the past year. While restaurant sales in September 2002 were down 0.4 percent from August, Anderson noted that this decline was only about one-third as large as sales declines for the retail sector generally. He also told O’Neill that industry sales had climbed 4.7 percent in the last 12 months.

However, Anderson noted his concern about restaurant employment, which has declined in ten of the last 14 months. In spite of an October 2002 increase of 27,000 jobs, ‘restaurant employment is still down 158,000 jobs from its July 2001 peak,’ he told O’Neill.

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