5 things to know: 6 April 2018
5 things to know: 6 April 2018
06 APRIL 2018 9:35 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • Trump considering additional $100b in China tariffs
  • US wage gains point to tighter labor market
  • Analyst details what sale of HNA stake could mean for Hilton
  • G6 Hospitality CEO Jim Amorosia retires
  • US preliminary March 2018 data

Trump considering additional $100b in China tariffs: U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday he was considering levying tariffs on an additional $100 billion in Chinese imports, The Wall Street Journal reports.

This move would “triple the amount of Chinese goods facing levies when entering the U.S., up from the tariffs on $50 billion in imports from China that the president announced last week,” the newspaper reports.

Trump is claiming alleged violations of U.S. intellectual property laws as a reason for increased tariffs, as well as “Beijing’s unfair retaliation, which could harm our farmers and manufacturers.”

Hoteliers have expressed concerns over tariffs, especially when it comes to property improvement plans, saying steel tariffs would impact the cost of furniture, fixtures and equipment, reports Hotel News Now’s Stephanie Ricca.

U.S. wage gains point to tighter labor market: March saw the fewest jobs created by the U.S. economy in six months, while a pickup in wage gains pointed to a more constrained labor market, Reuters reports. Speculation from the latest jobs report is that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates again this year.

“Nonfarm payrolls increased by 103,000 last month as construction and retail sectors shed jobs, the Labor Department said on Friday. That was the smallest amount since September and followed a 326,000 surge in February,” Reuters reports.

Job growth is also slowing, with March below the 202,000 average of the last three months, the news outlet reports.

Analyst details what sale of HNA’s stake could mean for Hilton: China’s HNA Group appears to be preparing to unload all its shares in Hilton-related companies, in a move that could be “positive for the stock over the long term,” according to one analyst who spoke to Hotel News Now.

Amanda Sweitzer, senior research associate at Baird, said the industry has been watching to see whether HNA would make this move following its recent selloffs. She noted the Chinese company’s 26.1% stake in Hilton is significantly more valuable than its investments in its spinoffs Park Hotels & Resorts and Hilton Grand Vacations, which both recently sold.

Sweitzer said pressure from the Chinese government appears to be behind HNA’s decision to sell off its stocks and assets.

G6 Hospitality CEO retires: G6 Hospitality, the parent company of Motel 6 and Studio 6, announced Jim Amorosia has retired from his role as president and CEO, capping his 33-year stint with G6. Succeeding him as interim president and CEO will be Rob Palleschi, currently chief development officer at the company, according to a company news release.

Amorosia has led the company since 2011, guiding G6 through a substantial capital investment program, including renovation improvements worth $500 million, the release states. Prior to Palleschi’s position with the company in 2017, he worked with Hilton.

“I’m excited to take on this new position, and we thank Jim for his many years of service to the company. Moving forward, we see a clear path for continued growth and expansion of our brands well into the future. Our keys to success will be further strengthening our relationships with our guests and our local communities, and creating exciting new opportunities for both team members and franchise partners,” Palleschi said in the news release.

U.S. preliminary March 2018 data: Preliminary data from STR, parent company of Hotel News Now, reports U.S. hotel industry saw positive year-over-year results as average daily rate grew 2% to 4% and revenue per available room jumped 3% to 5%, while occupancy was flat to 2%.

By chain scale, the luxury segment saw the largest ADR increase (6% to 8%) and RevPAR increase (8% to 10%) followed by economy with ADR growth of 3% to 5% and RevPAR up 4% to 6%, according to STR. Upper upscale hotels reported flat to 2% ADR and RevPAR growth, as occupancy was down 1% to up 1% over March 2017.

Compiled by Dana Miller.

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