Interpret core managerial finance concepts and data.


You are the business analysis manager for a U.S. based hotel chain, part of the travel and leisure (or hospitality) industry. Your company’s executive leadership team has requested that you review current industry and market trends, identifying one key economic or market factor that you believe is important to address for the company’s business in the upcoming year. The request to limit your analysis to just one factor is a result of the intended presentation setting – you will be presenting your analysis in a 10-minute slot at the next quarterly board meeting.

At a high-level, several items from recent operations seem relevant. First, the company’s share of the U.S. hotel market has been stable for several years, but you are aware that the leadership team and board of directors would like to grow the business. The executives have considered both U.S. and international growth opportunities in the past, but they have not yet selected a strategy to pursue.

Next, the executive team is also focused on cost control to maintain the profitability of the current U.S. operations. The expenses that have increased the most in recent years have been food products and employee wages.

Finally, the executive team and board have been concerned about the emergence and growth of new types of competitors like Airbnb. Airbnb’s business model utilizing residential properties for consumer rental purposes has disrupted the industry and raised questions about the value proposition of the traditional hotel chain model.


To learn more about the travel and leisure industry, access the Mergent Online database via Rasmussen’s Library and Learning Services. Click on the Industry Analysis menu option, then select the Hospitality & Tourism and click Search. Multiple industry reports for North America, and other regions will be available. Select/view and read the most recent North America report.

After reading the Mergent industry report for North America, choose one relevant economic factor as the presentation topic. For example, the presentation could examine an economic factor related to the costs of operating a hotel chain such as inflation on food products. Next, research a valid, external source of data on the selected topic and collect several data points to use in a visual such as a chart or graph. An example source for relevant food product data is the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index (food-related inflation factors available).

Prepare a PowerPoint presentation deck that includes the following:

  • Title slide;
  • One slide describing the business being addressed (such as company growth, cost management, competitive environment, etc.) and its importance to the company;
  • One slide describing the industry data related to the selected topic;
  • One slide describing the economic data and source(s) identified for the topic;
  • One slide containing a visual (chart, graph, etc.) of the economic data;
    • Include a brief explanation or interpretation of the visual.
    • Example – a trend chart showing 5-years of inflation on food products with an explanation of the expected future effect on the prices that your hotel chain must charge customers for food.
  • Appendix slide with an APA style reference list for all data sources used.


To learn more about the travel and leisure industry, access the Mergent Online database via Rasmussen’s Online Library. Use the information in this FAQ: to learn how to locate the Mergent Report for the Travel & Leisure industry. Select/view and read the most recent Travel & Leisure report.

After reading the Travel & Leisure Mergent Industry Report for North America, choose one relevant economic factor as the presentation topic.

For assistance on developing a PowerPoint presentation, visit Rasmussen Library and Learning Services.

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