A series of cost-cutting actions helped Wyndham Worldwide ( WYN) surprise investors with stronger-than-expected first-quarter results Wednesday, pushing shares in the company up 35% in afternoon trading and buoying hotel stocks across the board.

The Parsippany, N.J.-based hotelier said its net income before charges came in at $74 million, or 41 cents a diluted share, topping analysts' EPS targets of 35 cents.

Including charges related to restructuring and other items, the company had earnings of $45 million, or 25 cents a share.

A year ago, the company posted a profit of $62 million, or 35 cents a share.

The company, owner of the Super 8 and Ramada brands, also offered guidance in its pre-market press release Wednesday, saying it expects to record second-quarter per-share earnings of 36 cents to 41 cents. The average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had put the company's EPS at 36 cents.

For the full year, Wyndham said to expect per-share earnings of $1.61 to $1.85 -- above analysts' targets of $1.60. The company is hoping for revenue of $3.5 billion to $3.9 billion on the year.

All was not completely rosy, however. Revenue in the quarter declined to $901 million from $1.01 billion, hurt especially by an 11.3% drop in revenue per available room, a widely watched metric of the lodging industry.

Wyndham attributed its wider margins in the quarter to cost cuts on the order of $812 million. Among other things, the company scaled back its marketing and administrative expenses.

Stock in Wyndham, which has been on a tear since trading near its 52-week lows in mid-March, was at $11.88, up $3.12 in afternoon trading Wednesday.

The company's earnings news helped lift other lodging stocks, including Marriott ( MAR), whose shares were up 8%, and Starwood Hotels ( HOT), up 11%.

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