The U.S. restaurant industry remained in growth mode in May.

The Washington, D.C.-based National Restaurant Association"s Restaurant Performance Index for the month was 102.3, the 27th consecutive month over 100, the threshold for industry growth, according to a news release.

The May total was, however, down 0.4% from April, as same-store sales and customer traffic levels declined in May.

"The outlook for the restaurant industry remains positive, as the (Restaurant Performance Index stood above the 102 level for the 8th consecutive month," Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the association"s Research and Knowledge Group, said in the release. "A majority of restaurant operators reported higher same-store sales in May, and operators are generally optimistic about an improving business environment in the months ahead."

For the 15th consecutive month, a majority of restaurant operators reported higher same-store sales, though May"s results were somewhat softer than April, according to the association.  

Sixty-seven percent of operators reported a same-store sales gain between May 2014 and May 2015, down from 71% who reported higher sales in April.

 
Restaurant operators also reported lighter traffic in May. Fifty-two percent reported an increase in traffic between May 2014 and May 2015, down from 55% who reported higher traffic in April.

 
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