Carnival (CCL) Rating Increased to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Carnival (NYSE:CCL) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Carnival shares have outpaced the industry in the past one year. Given burgeoning demand for cruise travel, the addition of new ships to its fleet bodes well. In fact, the company believes that it is well positioned for continued earnings growth, given the current strength in its bookings along with pricing trends for the year. Notably, its brand building efforts together with other marketing activities are driving bookings. Its strategy of growing beyond familiar itineraries and capitalizing on fast growing markets also bodes well.  Cost containment efforts like lower fuel consumption are likely to aid profits.However, adverse forex translations, higher costs and other macroeconomic issues in key operating regions remain headwinds. Additionally, a potential increase in fuel costs might dent profits. Estimates for the current quarter and year has also remained stable, limiting the upside potential of the stock.”

A number of other equities research analysts have also weighed in on CCL. Goldman Sachs Group reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of Carnival in a research report on Tuesday, August 15th. UBS reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $76.00 price objective (up from $67.00) on shares of Carnival in a research report on Thursday, August 17th. BidaskClub upgraded Carnival from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Friday, August 18th. Credit Suisse Group lowered Carnival from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and cut their price objective for the stock from $78.00 to $70.00 in a research report on Friday, September 15th. Finally, Susquehanna Bancshares lifted their price objective on Carnival from $75.00 to $76.00 and gave the stock a “positive” rating in a research report on Monday, September 25th. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, twelve have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $67.73.

Shares of Carnival (NYSE:CCL) traded up $0.12 during trading on Thursday, reaching $66.06. The company had a trading volume of 3,002,800 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,164,449. Carnival has a 1-year low of $50.77 and a 1-year high of $69.89. The company has a market capitalization of $35,333.03, a P/E ratio of 17.08, a P/E/G ratio of 1.18 and a beta of 0.73. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.32, a current ratio of 0.21 and a quick ratio of 0.16.

Carnival (NYSE:CCL) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, September 26th. The company reported $2.29 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $2.20 by $0.09. Carnival had a return on equity of 12.15% and a net margin of 15.53%. The firm had revenue of $5.52 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.39 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.92 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 8.2% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts anticipate that Carnival will post 3.7 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Carnival news, CEO Arnold W. Donald sold 5,000 shares of Carnival stock in a transaction on Friday, December 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $65.57, for a total value of $327,850.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. In the last three months, insiders sold 100,903 shares of company stock valued at $6,782,771. Corporate insiders own 23.80% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. bought a new stake in shares of Carnival in the second quarter worth $117,000. Grove Bank & Trust grew its holdings in shares of Carnival by 367.8% in the third quarter. Grove Bank & Trust now owns 2,035 shares of the company’s stock worth $131,000 after acquiring an additional 1,600 shares during the period. Bessemer Group Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Carnival by 109.4% in the second quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. now owns 2,618 shares of the company’s stock worth $171,000 after acquiring an additional 1,368 shares during the period. Smithfield Trust Co. grew its holdings in shares of Carnival by 826.2% in the third quarter. Smithfield Trust Co. now owns 2,825 shares of the company’s stock worth $182,000 after acquiring an additional 2,520 shares during the period. Finally, YorkBridge Wealth Partners LLC grew its holdings in shares of Carnival by 1.4% in the second quarter. YorkBridge Wealth Partners LLC now owns 2,926 shares of the company’s stock worth $191,000 after acquiring an additional 40 shares during the period. 75.94% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Carnival

Carnival Corporation is a leisure travel company. The Company is a cruise company of global cruise guests, and a provider of vacations to all cruise destinations throughout the world. The Company operates in four segments: North America, EAA, Cruise Support and, Tour and Other. The Company’s North America segment includes Carnival Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises (Princess) and Seabourn.

Analyst Recommendations for Carnival (NYSE:CCL)

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