December’s warm weather provided a breath of fresh air for casual dinnerhouse chains, according to weekly Knapp-Track data. Estimated comparable-restaurant sales at dinnerhouse chains rose 0.8 percent in December, compared with a 2.4-percent gain a year earlier—the fifth highest month in 2005. Estimated comparable-restaurant guest counts fell 1.2 percent in December 2006, compared with 1-percent decline December 2005.Three out of five weeks in December 2006 had positive comparable-restaurant ...

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