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Carnival Cruise Shares Higher Despite Growing Number Of Coronavirus Cases On Quarantined Ship

Tanzeel Akhtar

Carnival Cruise (NYSE: CCL) shares appear to be unaffected Wednesday by reports that 39 additional people have been tested positive for COVID-19 on the Diamond Princess cruise ship.

The Diamond Princess was placed in quarantine for two weeks upon arrival in Yokohama, Japan Feb. 3 after a man who disembarked in Hong Kong was diagnosed with the virus,.

An estimated 3,700 people are on board the cruise ship, which usually has a crew of 1,100 and a passenger capacity of 2,670, according to Reuters.

A total of 175 are infected with the virus, the news agency said. 

Carnival Cruise says it is closely monitoring the evolving situation with respect to COVID-19, a new coronavirus that has killed more than 1,000 people in an outbreak originating from Wuhan, China. 

“As a result of coronavirus, the company believes the impact on its global bookings and cancelled voyages will have a material impact on its financial results which was not anticipated in the company's previous 2020 earnings guidance,” Carnival said in a statement.

The cruise line said it is unable to determine the full financial impact on its fiscal 2020 results as the situation continues to evolve.

If Carnival has to suspend all of its operations in Asia through the end of April, this would impact its fiscal 2020 financial performance by 55 cents to 65 cents per share, which includes guest compensation, the company said. 

Carnival is evaluating contingency plans to mitigate the impact of the virus outbreak and will provide an update in late March alongside its first-quarter earnings report, the company said.

The stock was trading 2.3% higher at $43.94 at the time of publication Wednesday. The stock has a 52-week high of $59.24 and a 52-week low of $39.92.

The Diamond Princess cruise ship. Photo by Alpsdake via Wikimedia

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