5 things to know: 25 June 2020
5 things to know: 25 June 2020
25 JUNE 2020 9:49 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • 1.5 million new unemployment claims in US
  • Managing cash a major concern in Asia/Pacific
  • US hotel performance continues incremental rises
  • Companies struggle with reopening timing
  • Hotel profitability improved slightly in May

1.5 million new unemployment claims in U.S.: The U.S. Department of Labor’s weekly jobless claims report showed 1.48 million Americans filed new unemployment claims for the week ending 20 June, Reuters reports. That was a slight drop from the previous week’s 1.54 million claims but was more than economists’ projections of 1.3 million.

“There were some businesses that tried to maintain their workforce, waiting to see what would happen as businesses reopened,” Gus Faucher, chief economist at PNC Financial, told the news agency. “Even as the economy is picking up, they are not seeing a lot of demand and are deciding that they don’t need that many workers.”

Managing cash a major concern in Asia/Pacific: Hotel executives speaking during BHN Group’s recent “HICAP 6x8: Recovery top of mind episode 2” session noted the availability of capital and cash flow are paramount concerns for hoteliers in the Asia/Pacific right now as the region looks to climb back from the coronavirus pandemic, HNN’s Danielle Hess reports.

“The management of cash flow, to have a positive cash flow … can make or break a company. Once the debt moratorium clears in about 60 days … you can see a lot of issues … especially with owning companies,” said Choe Peng Sum, CEO of Pan Pacific Hotels Group. “So we set up a war-room team made up of the best just to go through scenario planning, week after week going through to make sure we have the right financing done, the line of credit as well as a positive cash flow.”

U.S. hotel performance continues incremental rises: The latest numbers from HNN’s parent company STR show yet another week with slight week-to-week improvements but still major year-over-year declines for U.S. hotels.

Occupancy for the week fell 41.8% year over year to 43.9%, while average daily rate was down 31.7% to $92.20, and revenue per available room was down 60.3% to $40.48

This marked the 10th consecutive week of weekly occupancy increases.

Companies struggle with reopening timing: Businesses are having a hard time finding the right time to reopen as COVID-19 cases continue to grow, according to The Wall Street Journal. This includes The Walt Disney Company, which announced plans to delay the reopening of California resorts, originally set to happen on 17 July.

Workers at Disney’s California and Florida theme parks had criticized reopening plans, calling them unsafe.

Hotel profitability improved slightly in May: While the year-over-year profitability numbers from STR remain remarkably grim, May was slightly better than April, according to a news release.

Gross operating profit per available room was down 110.1% to -$10.26, but that was marginally better than April’s 116.9% decline. Total revenue per available room was down 88.3% for May to $28.62.

Compiled by Sean McCracken.

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