Carnival’s Q1 Earnings Driven by Reduced Operating Costs

Carnival Corporation has reported net income of $49 million (U.S. GAAP), or $0.06 per share, on earnings of $3.531 billion for its first quarter ended Feb. 28, 2015, compared to a net loss of $20 million, or $0.03 per share, on revenues of $3.585 billion for the same quarter last year.

The earnings come from lower gross operating costs at $3.2 billion, compared to $3.5 billion last year, driven by significantly reduced fuel costs, lower commissions, transportation and other costs, and somewhat lower food costs.

Net operating costs were $122.26 per passenger cruise day this year, down from $125.53 last year.

Arnold Donald, president and CEO, said the company will continue to focus on cost savings, more efficient operations and procurement, noting the recent appointment of a new chief procurement executive.

This includes the building of new and more efficient ships and the removal of less efficient tonnage.

Gross revenue was down in the first quarter: $184.29 per passenger cruise day, compared to $190.53 per passenger cruise day for the same period last year.

For Q1, gross ticket revenue per passenger day was $137.37. onboard was $46.40 and for tours and other, $0.52, compared to $144.93, $45.17 and $0.43, respectively, last year.

Net cruise revenue per passenger day was $147.30 in Q1 of this year, compared to $151.09 last year. Net ticket revenue per passenger day was $106.79 this year, down from $111.98 last year, and net onboard revenue was $40.61, up from $39.11 last year.

Carnival underscored that the results were impacted by unfavorable currency impact. While all signs for 2015 seemed positive, currency “translation and transaction” continues to be a headwind, according to company executives, whereby foreign market price increases may be offset when local currency is converted to a stronger U.S. dollar.

The non-U.S. GAAP forecast for 2015 in so-called constant dollars is for earnings per share in the range of $2.30 to $2.50, up from $1.93 for 2014.

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