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Holiday Parties Likely Cheerier This Year: EcoPulse

Executives are loosening the purse strings this year, as budgets for holiday parties are higher than in 2012 at restaurants including STK steakhouses.

The pace of booking activity is shaping up to be “slightly better” than the “mid-single digit” growth Larry Miller, founder of MillerPulse.com in Atlanta, forecast in September. Business leaders appear to feel more generous, which is encouraging because restaurant sales this year have been “a bit disappointing overall,” said Miller, who provides an industry performance-benchmarking service.