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Carnival optimism boosts cruise industry

Carnival optimism boosts cruise industry

Profits at Carnival Corporation increased significantly over the fourth quarter, with a positive outlook for 2011 pushing shares higher this morning.

For the three month period ending November 30th, the Miami-based cruise line reported a profit of $248 million, or 31 cents a share.

This is up from $193 million, or 24 cents a share, a year earlier.

The latest quarterly figures also included a seven-cent hit from the November fire aboard the Carnival Splendour.

Profits were pushed higher by an increase in bookings for departures in Europe and the Caribbean, as well as to a better consumer environment, fewer discounts and promotions, and subsiding concerns about the European market.

Following the release of the results, chief executive Micky Arison said booking trends continued to improve for the company’s North American and European brands, particularly for the peak summer season.

“We are optimistic these positive trends are an indicator of a strong wave season, our heaviest booking period which begins in early January,” Arison added in a statement.

Looking Forward to 2011

Carnival - the world’s largest cruise operator - saw shares rise over 3 per cent in New York following the results.

Looking toward fiscal 2011, Carnival forecast earnings per share of $2.90 to $3.10.

This was slightly ahead of the average analyst forecast of $2.92 in earnings per share, according to Thomson Reuters.

Carnival said that advance bookings for 2011 are at higher prices, though occupancy is slightly lower than last year.

It forecast a three to four per cent increase in net revenue yields for 2011 on a constant dollar basis.

At current prices, fuel costs to the company will likely increase $134 million in 2011 compared with 2010, costing Carnival 17 cents per share.

Carnival was hit by a fire aboard Carnival Splendour, which is likely to remain under repair until February

World Mobi

Also in the United States today, World Mobi is celebrating the success of its new city guide to Miami. 

World Mobi offers the most comprehensive mobile travel guides available, with over 800 cities in 200 countries listed. Each is developed by the World Mobi team to combine into a single global travel directory.

However, each city retains its own mobile identity via a dedicated domain. Already on offer are Brussels.Mobi, London.Mobi, Sanfrancisco.Mobi and Sydney.Mobi.

Miami.Mobi is the latest in this illustrious line up, offering click to call functionality – which means no scribbling down telephone numbers.

Most entries are also linked to websites where users can quickly access more detailed information if needed.

Other key features include information on accommodation, restaurants, attractions, entertainment, nightlife, shopping, and transport.

World.Mobi guides include user reviews and traveller utilities such as a translation guide, currency converter, news and local weather guide.