The Baird/STR Hotel Stock Index rose 5 percent in December, outperforming the S&P 500, which rose 3.7 percent, and the MSCI US REIT Index, up 2.7 percent. For 2020 as a whole it was down 13.2 percent.

THE BAIRD/STR Hotel Stock Index rose 5 percent in December on the market’s optimistic outlook for the future. However, for 2020 as a whole it was down 13.2 percent.

During December, the index outperformed the S&P 500, which rose 3.7 percent, and the MSCI US REIT Index, up 2.7 percent.  The hotel brand sub-index jumped 5.2 percent from November, when the overall index surged up 31 percent. The Hotel REIT sub-index increased 4.4 percent.

“Hotel stocks continued their rebound in December as the positive vaccine and re-opening sentiment remained front and center for investors,” said Michael Bellisario, senior hotel research analyst and director at Baird. “Despite the significant pandemic-related impact to hotel demand that occurred in 2020, hotel stocks performed relatively better than they did in 2011, 2015, and 2018, which demonstrates how forward-looking the stock market is today.”

That optimism does not change the current, negative reality of the market, according to Amanda Hite, STR president.

“Despite a travel boost into the New Year’s holiday, December was the second consecutive month with worsened hotel occupancy,” Hite said. “With COVID cases soaring and economic limitations continuing, we are forecasting a slow start to the year. Mathematically speaking, 2021 will be the single best year on record with regards to RevPAR growth, but that is cold comfort for the myriad of hotels currently in limbo. Industry stakeholders continue to hope for a swift vaccine rollout to the traveling public to finally put 2020 behind us.”