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Lodging executives cautious about business conditions

April 24. 2013 3:41AM

DURHAM — Lodging executives nationwide were less optimistic about general business conditions in March than the prior month, according to a new index released by the University of New Hampshire.

The Lodging Executive Sentiment Index, or LESI, decreased from 72.6 in February to 68.8 in March.

LESI is based on a monthly survey of lodging executives representing companies with more than 2.5 million hotel rooms across the United States, more than 55 percent of all U.S. rooms.

According to the index, 44-percent of lodging executives indicated current business conditions were good, a decline from 52 percent in February, while 56 percent indicated conditions were normal, up from 43 percent in February.

Nelson Barber, UNH associate professor of hospitality management, said executives are cautiously optimistic about expectations for room reservations looking forward 12 months.

Thirty-one percent of the executives think conditions will be better in the next 12 months, down from 48 percent in February, while 69 percent indicated conditions will be the same. No executive thought conditions would be worse.

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