Royal Caribbean Cruises (RCL) Downgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:RCL) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued on Monday, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Royal Caribbean have outperformed the industry in the past three months. The company reported better-than-expected earnings in the fourth quarter of 2018. With this, it posted earnings beat for the 16th straight quarter. Accelerating demand is also likely to result in double-digit EPS growth in 2019. Higher passenger ticket, as well as onboard and other revenues, aided overall top line. Solid booking trend is anticipated to continue in 2019. Royal Caribbean continues to make use of digital tools for marketing, product development and to enhance the consumer experience. However, earnings estimates for the current quarter have been stable over the past 30 days. Nonetheless, higher costs might hurt profitability in the near term. Global uncertainties and tricky consumer discretionary spending are added concerns for Royal Caribbean.”

A number of other analysts have also recently commented on RCL. ValuEngine cut shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, January 4th. Wells Fargo & Co upped their target price on shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises from $145.00 to $155.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, February 25th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the stock. Royal Caribbean Cruises presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $140.83.

Shares of RCL traded up $0.05 during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $121.99. 54,218 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,344,324. The company has a quick ratio of 0.15, a current ratio of 0.17 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.75. Royal Caribbean Cruises has a 1 year low of $89.48 and a 1 year high of $133.60. The stock has a market capitalization of $25.53 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.77, a PEG ratio of 0.85 and a beta of 1.52.

Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:RCL) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 30th. The company reported $1.53 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.51 by $0.02. Royal Caribbean Cruises had a net margin of 19.08% and a return on equity of 17.08%. The firm had revenue of $2.33 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.31 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $7.53 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 16.4% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, analysts expect that Royal Caribbean Cruises will post 9.97 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, CFO Jason T. Liberty sold 13,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, February 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $121.79, for a total value of $1,583,270.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 48,811 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,944,691.69. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, CEO Michael W. Bayley sold 7,115 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, February 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $116.15, for a total transaction of $826,407.25. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 69,447 shares of company stock valued at $8,271,277. 15.26% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Ipswich Investment Management Co. Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises in the fourth quarter worth $123,000. Bank of America Corp DE boosted its position in shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises by 20.3% during the fourth quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 399,132 shares of the company’s stock worth $39,031,000 after acquiring an additional 67,439 shares during the last quarter. First Allied Advisory Services Inc. boosted its position in shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises by 41.7% during the fourth quarter. First Allied Advisory Services Inc. now owns 2,224 shares of the company’s stock worth $214,000 after acquiring an additional 654 shares during the last quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises by 6.4% during the fourth quarter. Nisa Investment Advisors LLC now owns 74,415 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,277,000 after acquiring an additional 4,495 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Rehmann Capital Advisory Group boosted its position in shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises by 13,523.3% during the third quarter. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group now owns 30,925 shares of the company’s stock worth $238,000 after acquiring an additional 30,698 shares during the last quarter. 71.20% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Royal Caribbean Cruises

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. operates as a cruise company. The company operates cruises under the Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Azamara Club Cruises, and Silversea Cruises brands. The Royal Caribbean International brand provides itineraries to destinations worldwide, including Alaska, Asia, Australia, Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, the Caribbean, Europe, the Panama Canal, and New Zealand with cruise lengths that range from 2 to 23 nights.

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