Q4 joy for Carnival

Carnival Corp has surprised the market with a fourth quarter profit but has warned red ink awaits in the first quarter of fiscal 2014.
Carnival Cruise Lines’ Carnival Conquest

Carnival Cruise Lines’ Carnival Conquest

Carnival banked $66m in the three months to the close of November, down from $93m booked 12 months ago.

Earnings per share of $0.04 exceeded market expectations for a breakeven result for the period.

Arnold Donald, chief executive of the cruiseship owner, said: “Accelerated progress in Carnival Cruise Lines' brand recovery had a positive impact on fourth quarter results.

“A steady stream of innovative product initiatives, the launch of a nationwide marketing campaign and travel agent outreach programme, as well as an industry-leading vacation guarantee fuelled the brand's improvement."

Red ink ahead

Carnival says a decrease in dollar revenue yields in the first quarter, coupled with rising costs will lead to a non-GAAP diluted loss of between $0.07 and $0.11 per share.

Donald said: "We are catching up on booking volumes and gaining momentum as we enter 2014.

“We believe the compelling value we have in the marketplace will continue to stimulate strong demand leading to a solid wave period.

“We continue to expect revenue yields to turnpositive in the second half of 2014 compared to the prior year."

He added: "With over 100 ships and more than 10 million guests we have a scale advantage that cannot be replicated in this industry.

“We are aggressively seeking opportunities to leverage that scale to drive top line improvement and gain cost efficiencies.”

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