Few restaurant stocks performed as well last year as did Oklahoma City-based drive-in chain Sonic, which seemed to recover from a lengthy slump that had taken it down from a lofty perch as a darling of the franchise restaurant world. Now the company hopes that an even bigger emphasis on national ads can help it maintain that success.
Despite a presidential election, problems in Europe and fiscal cliff concerns, investors generally had a good 2012. For all of that volatility, the S&P 500 finished with its best increase in three years, up more than 13 percent for the year. The restaurant industry mostly matched this growth.
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