The state of the economy is mixed. While the record-long expansion has continued, the pace of economic growth has slowed. On a positive note, the labor market has remained strong, consumer confidence is elevated, wage growth has remained solid and consumer spending has continued to grow. On the other hand, business investment has stalled and exports have declined. As a result, the manufacturing sector, which is most exposed to the current weakness, is suffering. Meanwhile, the rest of the economy has continued to grow. The consensus outlook is that the expansion will continue but decelerate in the near term.
While the lodging industry is starting to see a slowdown in their metrics, travelers do not appear to be holding back on their upcoming holiday travel. Industry trends point to a decline in group booking in the latter half of 2020 and continued softening of international travel in the near term.
U.S. Travel released its updated travel forecast last month, which includes revised numbers from 2018 and a look ahead through 2023. Overall international arrivals are expected to increase from 80 million in 2018 to 88 million by 2023.