Sales growth in the eating and drinking-out market in November — historically a challenging trading month for the sector — slowed to just 0.4% on a like-for-like basis.
According to the Coffer Peach Business Tracker, although the sector recorded a sixth month of sales growth, it was the slowest period of growth since May.
The like-for-like growth figure of 0.4% was against November 2009.
Total sales were up 1.7%.
The Coffer Peach Business Tracker, put together by Peach Factory in association with Coffer Group, UBS and KPMG, monitors the sales performance of 17 major pub and restaurant companies including Gondola, Mitchells & Butlers, Punch, Tragus and Whitbread.
It said that while Christmas was looking strong, the figures for December would be impacted by the snow and cold weather experienced across much of the UK.
"While the leading operators have managed another month of lfl growth, the outlook for the sector remains relatively challenging," said Richard Hathaway, head of travel, leisure and tourism at KPMG.
"Weather disruption this month, the VAT increase in January and the prospect of subdued consumer confidence in 2011 will all make trading tough, particularly outside of central London.
"It is likely therefore to be only those operators and brands that can beat the market that will see meaningful growth for a while."