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Intercontinental Hotels Slips As It Drops Interim Dividend

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By Dhirendra Tripathi

Investing.com – ADRs of hotel owner InterContinental Hotels Group (NYSE:IHG) traded 0.7% lower Tuesday as the chain decided to drop the interim dividend for 2021 even as it swung to an operating profit in the first half of the year.

The company said its board is confident “the proven highly cash generative nature of our business model will allow resumption of dividend payments in due course”.

IHG today declared its results for the first half ended June 30.

The hotel operator reported sequential monthly improvement in both occupancy and rate since March. As per the company, about half of its hotels in July reported revenue per available room, a key performance indicator, above pre-pandemic levels. RevPAR grew 20% compared to last year.

The chain closed the first half with 884,000 rooms across 5,994 hotels.

Recovery was most pronounced in Greater China, but leisure bookings in the U.S., IHG’s biggest market, continue to be strong, the company said.

It said Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia markets are still a challenge and regional performances will reflect variations in both vaccine rollout progress and travel restrictions.

Things had "gotten tougher" in markets such as Australia and Japan, Chief Financial Officer and Group Head of Strategy Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson said, adding that recent domestic travel restrictions in China would have a short-term impact on IHG, Reuters reported.

IHG reported an operating profit of $138 million compared to a loss of $233 million a year earlier. Revenue fell 6% to $1.17 billion.

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