Carnival’s stock is having a record year as cruise demand keeps increasing

Carnival’s stock is having a record year as cruise demand keeps increasing

Results for the latest quarter beat expectations, and the full-year profitability outlook was upbeat

Shares of Carnival Corp. extended their record 2023 rally Thursday after the cruise operator produced yet another quarter of record results as demand for cruises keeps strengthening.

“It’s safe to say we ended the year on a high note and closed another quarter with record revenues, record booking levels and record customer deposits,” Chief Executive Josh Weinstein said on the post-earnings conference call with analysts, according to a FactSet transcript. “In fact, we consistently set records in all four quarters this past year.”

The stock CCL, -1.35% CCL, -0.76% rose 3.8% in morning trading. It has rocketed 132.8% year to date, putting it on track for the best yearly performance since the company went public in July 1987. The current record yearly rally is 85.8%, set in 1991.

Net losses for the quarter to Nov. 30 narrowed to $48 million, or 4 cents a share, from $1.6 billion, or $1.27 a share, in the same period the year before. Excluding nonrecurring items, the adjusted per-share loss of 7 cents beat the FactSet loss consensus of 13 cents.

Revenue jumped 40.6% to $5.397 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $5.295 billion, as passenger-ticket revenue climbed 54.7% to $3.51 billion and onboard and other revenue rose 20.1% to $1.886 billion.

Booking volumes during the quarter continued at “significantly elevated levels,” the company said, above the bookings of a year ago and of 2019, before the pandemic. Pricing on booking during the quarter was “considerably higher” than last year.

Customer deposits jumped 25% to $6.4 billion.

“[W]e consistently outperformed in all four quarters of the year, buoyed by a strengthening demand environment across all our brands,” Weinstein said.

For fiscal 2024, the company expects adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $5.6 billion, above the current FactSet consensus of $5.5 billion.

Carnival’s stock rally comes as the Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR exchange-traded fund XLY has run up 39.1% this year and the S&P 500 index SPX has gained 23.3%.

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