Carnival Earnings Cruise Even Higher in Q1

Carnival Corp. (NYSE: CCL) reported its fiscal first-quarter financial results before the markets opened on Thursday. The company said that it had $0.52 in earnings per share (EPS) on $4.23 billion in revenue, versus consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters that called for $0.43 in EPS on revenue of $4.11 billion. In the same period of last year, Carnival said it had EPS of $0.38 and $3.79 billion in revenue.

During the quarter, gross revenue yields (revenue per available lower berth day, or ALBD) increased 9.2%. In constant currency, net revenue yields increased 3.9% for the first quarter, better than December guidance of up 1.5% to 2.5%.

At the same time, gross cruise costs including fuel per ALBD increased 9.0%. In constant currency, net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD increased 1.0%, better than December guidance of up 2.0% to 3.0%, principally due to the timing of expenses between quarters.

Looking ahead to the fiscal second quarter, the company expects to see EPS in the range of $0.56 to $0.60 and net revenue yields increasing 2.5% to 3.5% year over year. The consensus estimates call for $0.53 in EPS on $4.19 billion in revenue for the coming quarter.

On the books, Carnival’s cash and cash equivalents totaled $453 million at the end of the quarter, up from $395 million at the end of the previous fiscal year.

Arnold Donald, president and CEO of Carnival, commented:

We are off to a strong start to the year achieving another quarter of record earnings on record revenues and exceeding the high end of guidance. This strong operational execution affirms our efforts to create demand in excess of measured capacity growth and exceed guest expectations once onboard. Our guest experience efforts, coupled with our ongoing marketing and public relations programs are clearly accelerating cruise demand across the board to drive cruise ticket prices higher.

Shares of Carnival were last seen up 1.3% to $67.90 on Thursday, with a consensus analyst price target of $76.99 and a 52-week trading range of $57.39 to $72.70.