There is going to be more money around this year, so on the face of it business travel should pick up speed. The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) thinks it will, after taking a look at global economic prospects, and is forecasting business travel spending to grow by 6.1% against a likely 5.1% in 2017. Rising consumer and business confidence should encourage businesses to hire more employees, it reckons, and to send them on trips. In turn, this rising demand will allow the industry to push up prices, with airfares forecast to rise by 3.5% and hotel prices by 3.7%. Some analysts on Wall Street, however, see downsides in that and have downgraded the shares of Expedia and Priceline on the grounds that increased business travel would limit room supply. Rob Sanderson at brokers MKM wrote in a note that Expedia’s room-night growth in particular has disappointed: “We think this is related mostly to supply tightness, which is crowding out online travel agency customers and may be driving them into alternative accommodation more and more.” Get the full story at EyeForTravel