Royal Caribbean says U.S. strength to offset Europe woes in 2013

Mon Feb 4, 2013 8:56am EST

Feb 4 (Reuters) - Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, the world's second-largest cruise operator, said on Monday that strong U.S. business would mitigate lingering weakness in Europe in 2013, which forced it to take a large impairment charge for its struggling Spanish cruise line.

Royal Caribbean reported a fourth-quarter net loss of $392.8 million, or $1.80 per share, on revenue of $1.81 billion, compared with a profit of $36.6 million, or 17 cents per share, on revenue of $1.78 billion a year earlier.

The loss stemmed from a $413.9 million impairment charge related to its Spanish cruise line Pullmantur, which has been hit by austerity measures in that country, the company said.

Excluding that, Royal Caribbean reported a profit of 10 cents.

The cruise operator expects 2013 earnings of $2.30 per share to $2.50 per share, and expects net yields, which reflect passenger tickets and what customers spend on board, to be up between 2 and 4 percent, excluding currency fluctuations.

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