CORRECTED-IHG upbeat despite tough outlook in several key markets

Tue Aug 5, 2014 5:07am EDT

(Corrects erroneous reference to underlying profit forecast, paragraph 2)

LONDON Aug 5 (Reuters) - InterContinental Hotels Group , the world's biggest hotelier, posted a 6 percent rise in first-half profit and said it was encouraged by current trading trends despite political or economic problems in some markets.

IHG, which operates around 4,700 hotels and with brands such as Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and InterContinental, said on Tuesday underlying operating profit for the six months to June 30 rose to $301 million.

Operating profit fell 8 percent on a reported basis from $338 million to $310 million, ahead of an average forecast of $305 million.

Underlying revenue rose 4 percent to $788 million, with global revenue per available room (RevPAR), a key industry measure, up 5.8 percent, driven by rising business and leisure travel in the United States where it makes almost two-thirds of its operating profit. (Reporting by Neil Maidment, editing by Louise Heavens)

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