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Viraj Chaudhari

It rhymes with more

’m not necessarily one for signs and omens, but I

do find it encouraging that this new year rhymes with “more.” Anyway, I guess

it’s really a matter of what comes after the “more,” good things or bad.

If you’ll indulge me, I’m going to begin with some self-promotion of one

of the good things. The second printing of my novel “Pale in Death” is now

available from Down & Out Books. You can look it up on the publisher’s site

or Amazon.

And yes, it’s the second printing. My first publisher went belly up five or six

years ago so I’m hoping for a better outcome this time.

But, enough about me.

What are the good things for the hotel business that we need more of over the

next 12 months?

Well, more travel would be good, and that seems to be the case. By September,

travel spending in the U.S. had reached $104 billion, according to the U.S. Travel

Association. It is projected to exceed $198 billion this year according to the website


So that’s good, but we all know that the travel industry only thrives in good

economic times, so will those continue? Hard to say. That recession that was

supposed to hit last year seems to be looming still, but not as much. Economist

David Rosenberg said in an interview on the Wealthion webcast that he expects a

soft landing with meager growth, with positive results for the stock market.

At the same time, he warned that this could still “morph into that recession that

miraculously didn’t happen last year” as earnings expectations come down. In

another interview on CNBC, Rosenberg again said it was “premature to throw in

the recession towel” as 2024 rolls out.

Well, ok, then.

In the “more bad” category, this is an election year.

No, I’m not going to give predictions or predilections on the outcome of that

election. But elections in general tend to rile things up, and it’s no secret that

our political process has verged toward chaos in recent years. The presidential

candidates haven’t officially been decided yet, but almost certainly we’re looking

at a replay of 2020 and we all know how that went.

Well, some of us seem a bit deluded about how that went, actually, but I’ll

go no further in that direction. That way madness lies.

In the end, for now, I’m keeping on the sunny side and saying this year will be,

as Spike Lee once put it, “mo better.” Be sure, I’m wishing that for all of you.

Edward J. Brock, Senior Editor

[email protected]

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