Kennewick Wendy's Sees High Profits Amidst Weak Economy - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Kennewick Wendy's Sees High Profits Amidst Weak Economy

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KENNEWICK, Wash--  In such tough economic times, a number of consumers are stretching their buck as far as it'll go.  A number of sit-down restaurants were forced to close their doors because prices got too high.  But not all restaurants were left hungry; fast food chains on a whole seemed to fare better.  And with prices as low as a buck, it can be hard to turn away. 

"I've often many times gone to the dollar menu and said 'hey, what can I get for a buck?'," says Wendy's Shift Supervisor Julie Saenz.

Julie says tough economic times or not, people want to eat--and fast.

"When you can do $300 in a half hour, you're talking about some business there," says Julie.

In fact this local Wendy's franchise saw a dramatic spike in sales in December--several hundred dollars worth per day.  At least for the time being, the store is fighting what seems to be the consumer's fear of spending money. 

The latest numbers suggest this restaurant isn't alone in a steady flow of customers.  A new survey says 60% of people are still eating out at least once a week, and the number of people eating out three or more times a week has increased.  Saenz says the boost in business might be the holidays, but isn't ruling out the economic down turn.  But above all else, she says convenience ranks as a clear factor in deciding what--and where--to eat.

"People are like 'what's the cheapest, what's the quickest, so I can get in and get out'."