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Marriott International’s U.S. Business Sees Deceleration After Post-Pandemic Peak

ByEditor

Feb 13, 2024

Marriott International Inc.’s fourth-quarter revenue missed estimates Tuesday as the post-pandemic travel boom eased. Marriott’s North American revenue for the fourth quarter rose 3.3%, while international sales were up 17.4%. Marriott’s current-quarter and full-year outlooks were below estimates. At midday Tuesday, Marriott stock was down about 6.3%.

Marriott International Inc. (MAR) shares dropped Tuesday as the big hotel chain missed sales forecasts and gave weaker-than-expected guidance amid slowing post-pandemic U.S. travel demand. The company reported fourth-quarter revenue rose 2.9% to $6.1 billion, short of estimates. But earnings per share (EPS) of $3.57 exceeded forecasts.

Overall revenue per available room (RevPAR) was up 7.2%. However, it increased just 3.3% in the U.S., while jumping 17.4% in international markets. Higher rates lifted group revenue 7%, the company said. Sales from leisure travelers gained 2%. Business traveler sales added 3% from the previous quarter as demand from large corporate customers continued to grow.

The company sees current-quarter EPS in a range of $2.12 to $2.19, and full-year EPS of $9.18 to $9.52. Both forecasts were below analysts’ expectations. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Anthony Capuano said Marriott anticipates that in 2024 it will be able to return $4.1 billion to $4.3 billion to shareholders after factoring in the half-billion dollars spent to purchase the Sheraton Grand Chicago hotel.

Shares of Marriott International hit an all-time high last week, and even with Tuesday’s decline, they are nearly 34% higher over the past year. At 1:21 p.m. ET, the stock was trading above $233, off 6.3%.

By Editor

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