Carnival stock rises after company announces return of 75% of fleet

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The Carnival Liberty cruise ship is seen after docking to allow crew members to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at Port Canaveral, the first U.S. port to sponsor COVID-19 vaccine distribution to port workers and vessel crew members.

Paul Hennessy | LightRocket | Getty Images

Shares of Carnival jumped 7.45% on Tuesday after the company announced plans to resume guest cruises with 75% of its total fleet capacity by year’s end, despite concerns about the spread of the more infectious delta Covid variant. The stock closed at $21.19 per share.

The company will resume operations with 54 ships across eight of its nine brands. Carnival Cruise Line, which already resumed operations, will also bring back the remaining nine vessels in its fleet by the end of the year.

These steps taken together will boost Carnival’s total operating capacity to 75%, according to the company.

In recent weeks, Carnival stock has fallen nearly 33% from its 52-week high of $31.52 on June 8. The stock is down more than 2% year to date.

Shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises rose 7.74% after falling nearly 4% on Monday, and Norwegian Cruise Line rose 8.28% after falling more than 5% on Monday.

On Monday, Carnival fell 5.7% amid concerns about the spread of the delta Covid variant and after an appeals court handed down a decision on Saturday that would temporarily keep in place pandemic restrictions on the industry.

The cruise industry is among the last to return to pre-pandemic operations after there were several high-profile outbreaks aboard ships at the beginning of the health crisis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention imposed strict health guidelines on the industry to prevent further outbreaks.

Carnival Cruise Line resumed cruises from the U.S. during the first weekend in July, after cruise operations were halted during the pandemic.

The company will begin requiring unvaccinated passengers to purchase travel insurance that would cover Covid-related costs. Royal Caribbean Cruises is implementing this policy as well.

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