Cruise operator Carnival sees hit to 2020 earnings from coronavirus outbreak

FILE PHOTO: The cruise ship Diamond Princess, where dozens of passengers were tested positive for coronavirus, is seen at Daikoku Pier Cruise Terminal in Yokohama, south of Tokyo, Japan February 10, 2020. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon/File Photo

(Reuters) – Cruise company Carnival Corp (CCL.N) (CCL.L), the operator of a ship quarantined in Yokohama due to coronavirus cases, warned on Wednesday of a hit to its annual earnings from a potential suspension of its operations in Asia due to the outbreak.

The world’s biggest cruise operator said travel restrictions were resulting in the cancellation of voyages in other parts of Asia after it had already suspended cruise operations at ports in China.

Carnival said the outbreak would have a 55 cents to 65 cents per share impact on its 2020 earnings. Analysts are expecting earnings of $4.52, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

The company’s Diamond Princess ship was placed in quarantine upon arriving in Yokohama, south of Tokyo, on Feb. 3, after a man who disembarked in Hong Kong was diagnosed with the virus. So far 175 people are reported to be infected.

However, China reported its lowest number of new coronavirus cases in two weeks, bolstering a forecast by Beijing’s senior medical adviser for the outbreak in the country to end by April – but fears of further international spread remained.

Rival Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd (RCL.N) earlier this month said it expected cruise cancellations to lower its first-quarter earnings by 25 cents per share.

Reporting by Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty

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