Shares of Royal Caribbean Group
rose 3.1% toward a nine-month high in premarket trading Tuesday, after the cruise operator reported a fourth-quarter loss that narrowed more than forecast and provided an upbeat full-year outlook as bookings have “significantly” exceeded pre-pandemic levels. “Leisure travel strength continues as consumer spend is shifting towards experiences, with cruising remaining an attractive value proposition,” said Chief Executive Jason Liberty. The net loss narrowed to $500.2 million, or $1.96 a share, from $1.36 billion, or $5.33 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, the adjusted per-share loss of $1.12 beat the FactSet loss consensus of $1.33. Revenue jumped 165% to $2.604 billion, just shy of the FactSet consensus of $2.608 billion. Load factors were in line with guidance at 95%, with Caribbean sales reaching 100% and holiday sailings close to 110%, while revenue per passenger cruise increased 3.5%. “We are experiencing a record-breaking WAVE season, resulting in a booked position approaching previous record highs and at higher prices,” Liberty said. (Wave season refers to peak cruise-promotion season during the first quarter.) For 2023, the company expects adjusted earnings per share of $3.00 to $3.60, surrounding the FactSet consensus of $3.33. The stock has soared 32.8% over the past three months through Monday while the S&P 500
has tacked on 8.0%.