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RCCL first quarter net profit more than doubles to $214.7 million

Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd (RCCL), the world’s second largest cruise shipping group, has reported a string rise in first quarter net profit, with strong demand in Europe offsetting the negative impact of recent events in Korea.

Group net profit rose to $214.7 million in the first quarter from $99.1 million in the same period last year, while operating income increased to $279.5 million from $163.1 million. Revenues reached $2.01 billion from $1.92 billion.

Net yields on a constant currency basis increased 6.0% during the quarter. constant-currency net cruise costs excluding fuel decreased 4.4%. Bunker pricing net of hedging for the first quarter was $531 per metric ton and consumption was 334,000 metric tons

The company said in a statement that bookings, overall, are not materially different from the same period last year, with strength in Europe offsetting the negative impact recent events of Korea.

Currency and fuel related matters have not materially changed either, while costs continue to be under control and the strong first quarter results are the key drivers of the upward guidance revision for the full year (please see separate story).

“Our progress continues on a steady upward path toward our Double-Double goals," said Richard D. Fain, chairman and CEO, in the statement. "The year started off with a very positive tone and the tone has only continued to please. We are looking forward to our fifth consecutive year of double-digit earnings growth."