(USA Today) You know it’s January when fast-food deals are as common as snowflakes — and diet ads.
Virtually every major fast-food chain — from Burger King to Wendy’s to Taco Bell — is wheeling and dealing with specials, promos, even freebies to thaw sales in what is typically the toughest quarter of the year for the $170 billion industry.
The ugliest driver: Unemployment remains at double digits for fast food’s core demographic, 18-to-34-year olds, says David Ovens, chief marketing officer at Taco Bell. For 16-to-19-year-olds, unemployment was at 26.3% in the fourth quarter, and at 14.9% for 20-to-24-year-olds, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics. “For them,” Ovens says, “value is even more important now than it was a few years ago.” Read more.