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NEW YORK (AP) — Shares of some big hotel companies gained Thursday, as an analyst reiterated his positive view of the industry.
Rates and occupancy levels in U.S. hotels have been trending higher since a soft spot in early July, with strength among luxury and upscale hotels, according to analyst Patrick Scholes of SunTrust Robinson Humphrey.
Scholes said in a note to clients that booking trends looked strong through the second half of the year.
Hotel companies have been acting bullishly lately.
Last month InterContinental Hotels Group PLC announced it will return $1 billion to shareholders as a reward for an increase in profit. And Marriott International Inc. plans to invest $2 billion to open more hotels around the world over the next three years. Investors have been concerned, however, about slowing growth in international markets including Asia.
On Thursday shares of Wyndham Corp. rose $2.65, or 5.2 percent, to close at $53.65 after hitting a 52-week high of $53.84 during the session. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. climbed $2.61, or 4.8 percent, to $56.79 and Hyatt Hotels Corp. gained $1.23, or 3.2 percent, to finish at $39.28.
Marriott shares rose $1.35, or 3.6 percent, to $38.75. Intercontinental added 15 cents to $25.77. Ashford Hospitality Trust Inc. rose 24 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $8.64. FelCor Lodging Trust Inc. gained 14 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $4.92 and LaSalle Hotel Properties rose 89 cents, or 3.3 percent, to close at $28.22.