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CCL Revenue nearly evaporates
Carnival Corp. said its revenue plunged to $31 million from $6.53 billion for the August quarter, a period that saw no sailings due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the removal of older ships as the company seeks to shrink its fleet.
The cruise operator on Thursday posted a third-quarter loss of $2.86 billion , or $3.69 a share, compared with a profit of $1.78 billion , or $2.58 a share, in the same period last year. The loss was in line with the company’s preliminary results last month. Analysts polled by FactSet were expecting a loss of $2.47 a share on revenue of $77.3 million .
Carnival also posted an adjusted loss of $2.19 a share, about in line with the $2.20 a share adjusted loss analysts polled by FactSet had expected. The company reported a profit of $1.78 billion in the third quarter last year. Carnival’s third-quarter loss was slimmer than the more than $4 billion loss it posted for the second quarter.
The cruise operator is moving to shed 18 less efficient ships, 10 of which have left the fleet, Carnival said. It said those 18 ships represent about 12% of its capacity before the pandemic and 3% of operating income in 2019.
The results came as the company’s Carnival Cruise Line has canceled most U.S. cruises through the end of the year, and its Seabourn luxury line this week canceled voyages on three ships as far forward as May 2021 . Cruise operators have lost billions of dollars this year as the pandemic forced them to halt sailings, leaving them dry in revenues. They haven’t sailed in the U.S. for more than half a year. Carnival said it expects a phased resumption of sailings.
In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s “no-sail” order was recently extended to Oct. 31 from Sept. 30 , though major cruise operators including Carnival had voluntarily agreed to cancel sailings through the end of October. The cruise industry last month proposed sailing protocols to the CDC, such as reducing virus transmission through air management.
Costa Cruises , the company’s Italian brand, started sailing again on Sept. 6 after a months-long hiatus brought on by ship outbreaks. Its German brand, AIDA Cruises , is resuming sailings in mid-October.
Carnival on average burned about $770 million a month during the third quarter, and it expects to burn about $350 million a month for the current quarter. Those cash-burn rates fall in line with the $650 million average monthly burn rate for the second half of the year the company previously expected.
Carnival said advanced bookings for the second half of 2021 available for sale as of Sept. 20 were at the higher end of the historical range.
Customer deposits as of Aug. 31 were $2.4 billion , most of which are future cruise credits the company had offered customers of canceled cruises in lieu of cash refunds, compared with $2.9 billion in May. Carnival said it can’t yet estimate how much of those deposits would be recognized in earnings compared to refunds or future cruise credits due to Covid-19 uncertainty.
The company continues to expect a loss of the year ending Nov. 30 .