It just isn’t getting any better out there. Late last month such industry bellwethers as Darden Restaurants, McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurants, Ruby Tuesday and Ruth’s Chris Steak House blamed slower guest traffic and declining sales for forcing them to reduce their financial forecasts for the just-ending 2007 and portions of the current new year. All of the companies cited the weak macroeconomic and consumer environments as well as continued cost pressures ...

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