This morning the Australian Bureau of Statistics released its inbound tourism data for the month of February.
According to the release, Australia welcomed 752,700 short term visitors onto its shores during February. This was a 4.8% increase on the prior corresponding period.
While the rate of growth is slowing compared to previous years (February 2016: +8.8% and February 2017 +7.7%), Australia is clearly still experiencing a boom in tourism.
This is likely to be a big boost for Australian companies with exposure to the tourism sector and could lead to strong earnings growth over the next couple of years.
Five shares which I think are poised to profit are listed below:
Apollo Tourism & Leisure Ltd (ASX: ATL)
Australia is a big country and those that want to get out and about to explore many of Australia’s tourist hotspots may opt for recreational vehicles. As a leading retailer and rental fleet operator of recreational vehicles, I believe Apollo Tourism & Leisure could experience a lift in demand for its fleet. This certainly has been the case so far this year. Last month it delivered pro forma half-year net profit before tax of $17.2 million, up 63.2% on the prior corresponding period.
Crown Resorts Ltd (ASX: CWN)
I think that Crown’s portfolio of hotels and casinos in prime tourist hotspots means it is well placed to benefit from the tourism boom. As more and more tourists flock to Australia, I expect demand for its hotel rooms will grow strongly. This could lead to the winning combination of higher room rates and occupancy levels. For the same reasons I think that industry peer Star Entertainment Group Ltd (ASX: SGR) could also be one for investors to consider.
Flight Centre Travel Group Ltd (ASX: FLT)
With its global footprint of travel agencies and a strong online presence, Flight Centre could continue to benefit greatly from the tourism boom. However, I do think that its shares are looking fully valued now. So investors may want to consider holding off an investment until a better buying opportunity presents itself. Alternatively, investors could consider industry peer Webjet Limited (ASX: WEB).
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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Crown Resorts Limited and Flight Centre Travel Group Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Webjet Ltd. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.