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5 things to know: 16 February 2012
February 16 2012

• Marriott, Hyatt report Q4 earnings
• Concord commits US$355m to development
• Attorney: NLRB changes will affect hotel industry
• STR releases weekly US, Canada data
• US unemployment claims drop to lowest level in four years

Marriott International on Wednesday released its fourth quarter and 2011 results.

Highlights of the earnings report include:
• Fourth quarter 2011 adjusted net income totaled US$159 million, an 18% increase compared to fourth quarter 2010 adjusted net income.
• Fourth quarter adjusted diluted earnings per share totaled 46 cents, a 31% increase over prior year adjusted results.
• Fourth quarter worldwide comparable systemwide revenue per available room rose 6.3% using actual dollars. Average daily rate rose 3.7% using actual dollars.
• At year-end, the company’s worldwide pipeline of hotels under construction, awaiting conversion or approved for development totaled over 110,000 rooms, including over 52,000 rooms outside North America.
• More than 6,900 rooms opened during the quarter, including more than 1,800 rooms converted from competitor brands and nearly 3,500 rooms in international markets.
• For full year 2012,
Marriott expects comparable systemwide RevPAR on a constant dollar basis to increase 5% to 7% in North America, outside North America and worldwide.
• At year-end 2011, group revenue bookings for 2012 North American comparable Marriott Hotels & Resorts properties were 9% higher than group revenue bookings at year-end 2010 for stays in 2011.

Hyatt Hotels also released its fourth quarter financial results.

Highlights are as follows:
• Adjusted EBITDA was US$143 million in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to US$118 million in the fourth quarter of 2010, an increase of 21.2%.
• Net income attributable to
Hyatt was US$52 million, or 31 cents per share, during the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to net income attributable to Hyatt of US$6 million, or 3 cents per share, in the fourth quarter of 2010.
• Comparable owned and leased hotels RevPAR increased 6% in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to the fourth quarter of 2010.
• The company added seven properties during the fourth quarter of 2011.

Concord Hospitality Enterprises announced the company has committed US$355 million in active development on 15 hotels in 2012 and expects to reach the 14,000 room threshold as a third-party operator and owner.

The development activity is expected to add approximately 3,500 construction jobs and more than 1,000 new hotel jobs to local economies. In addition, the company said it will continue to expand its third-party management portfolio, focusing primarily on the full-service sector and premium-branded select-service hotels.

Those awaiting a game-changing event that could stall any recovery taking place in the U.S. hotel industry need look no further than 30 April 2012, said Arnold E. Perl, an attorney who specializes in labor issues for Glankler Brown PLLC, at the 14th annual Memphis Lodging Industry Update.

Perl said significant changes in the election rules and processes for organized labor will be implemented the last day of April. Those changes, adopted by the National Labor Relations Board, will have a lasting effect on the hotel industry, he said.

The NLRB is a black-swan event for this industry,” Perl told the 150 attendees of the meeting. “The changes implemented by NLRB will jeopardize teamwork … that will dramatically change your properties.”

The U.S. and Canadian hotel industries experienced increases in all three key performance metrics during the week of 5-11 February 2012, according to data from STR.

U.S: In year-over-year comparisons for the week, occupancy was up 2.6% to 55.9%, ADR increased 3.8% to US$102.01 and RevPAR was up 6.5% to US$57.

Canada: In year-over-year measurements, occupancy ended the week with a 2% increase to 56.8%, its ADR rose 2.2% to CAD$124.43 and its RevPAR was up 4.3% to CAD$70.62.

U.S. seasonally adjusted unemployment initial claims were down 13,000 to 348,000 for the week ending 11 February, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. The four-week moving average was 365,250, a decrease of 1,750 from the previous week's revised average of 367,000.

Unemployment claims are down to the lowest level in approximately four years, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal

Compiled by Stephanie Wharton.

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