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Starwood skids after InterContinental Hotels says companies aren't in talks about a merger

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STAMFORD, Connecticut — Shares of hotel operators Starwood Hotels & Resorts and InterContinental Hotels Group rose in early trading Thursday on reports the companies were talking about a possible merger, but slumped when InterContinental Hotels said that wasn't true.

Shares of Starwood, the owner of the Sheraton and St. Regis hotels, gained as much as 5.2 percent and InterContinental Hotels Group stock added 4.8 percent Thursday morning. InterContinental Hotels, the owner of the Holiday Inn chain, said it is not in talks with Starwood about combining their businesses.

By the end of trading, shares of Starwood lost $4.45, or 5.4 percent, to $78.20, while U.S.-traded shares of InterContinental Hotels Group PLC declined 27 cents to $40.78.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. also reported mixed second-quarter results on Thursday. The company said its net income from continuing operations fell 11 percent to $136 million, or 79 cents per share. It said its profit totaled 84 cents per share if one-time costs are excluded. Revenue decreased 4 percent to $1.48 billion

Analysts expected net income of 74 cents per share and $1.46 billion in revenue, according to Zacks Investment Research.

The Stamford, Connecticut-based company trimmed its forecast for the year, saying it expects to earn $2.93 to $3.03 per share, down from $2.94 to $3.04 per share. Starwood is planning to spin off its timeshare resort business, and its outlook assumes that deal is completed at the end of 2015.

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Elements of this story were generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap ) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on HOT at http://www.zacks.com/ap/HOT

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Keywords: Starwood Hotels, Earnings Report

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