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Hilton Posts USD$123 million Q1 Profit

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Hilton raised its full-year profit forecast after strong business and leisure travel helped the company post a USD$123 million quarterly profit.

The company's net income attributable to shareholders rose to USD$123 million, from USD$34 million a year earlier.

Revenue rose 4 percent to $2.36 billion.

Rising consumer confidence in a recovering US economy has boosted the travel industry, allowing hotels to increase room rates.

Marriott and Hyatt have also reported better-than-expected first-quarter earnings.

Hilton, the world's largest hotel operator, said it now expects a full-year profit of 64 to 67 cents per share, up from its earlier forecast of 57 to 61 cents.

The hotelier, whose brands include Conrad and Waldorf Astoria, said it expects revenue per available room (RevPAR) to rise 5.5 to 6.5 percent in the second quarter.

Hilton, which has 4,155 hotels with a total of 686,790 rooms, said it had 510 hotels and 101,000 rooms under construction at the end of the first quarter.

The company said it accounted for more than 18 percent of all hotel rooms under construction globally.

First-quarter RevPAR increased 6.6 percent at hotels open for at least a year.

(Reuters)