Financial Services Not Fueling Corporate Travel Strength

Speaking last week at the PhoCusWright Conference 2011, Hilton Worldwide president of brands and commercial services Paul Brown noted that even though 2012 looks stronger in terms of rate than 2011 did this time last year, the industry is seeing a "fall-off" of transient demand from the financial services sector. Airlines similarly have reported softness from that sector.

"London as a market is actually seeing softness, which is very unusual this time in the recovery," Brown said. He added that in New York, hotels on Manhattan's West Side, which has a heavier percentage of leisure travelers, are recovering more quickly than East Side hotels.

With corporate budgets still being set for next year, Brown said it's "still too early to tell" how strong a 2012 rate recovery would be.