With the prolonged recession starting to feel like an interminable road trip, operators hoping for the beginning of an upswing likely are beginning to wonder, “Are we there yet?”The answer, according to new data from market research firm The NPD Group, is not quite.Though there are some signs of improvement, weak consumer confidence and negative traffic trends mean the road to recovery will be a slow and bumpy one, say officials at the Port Washington, N.Y.-based firm.On the heels of three ...

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