Carnival selling 18 cruise ships as coronavirus pandemic continues

Anybody need a cruise ship?

In a somber sign of the times, the world’s largest cruise operator is selling 12% of its fleet as the coronavirus pandemic continues to drown demand for travel.

Carnival Corporation plans to peddle 18 of its ocean liners in the months ahead, Carnival Corp. CEO Arnold Donald confirmed in a preliminary filing to the SEC on Tuesday.

“We continue to take aggressive action to emerge a leaner more efficient company,” Donald said in the statement. “We are accelerating the exit of 18 less efficient ships from our fleet. This will generate a 12% reduction in capacity and a structurally lower cost base, while retaining the most cash generative assets in our portfolio.”

Carnival reported an adjusted loss of $1.7 billion in the third quarter.

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Though the filing did not disclose exactly which Carnival ships would hit the market, the Miami-based company recently confirmed the sale of the 1990s-era Carnival Fascination and Carnival Imagination, after unloading the Carnival Fantasy and the Carnival Inspiration in July.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has banned cruise ships in American waters until at least Sept. 30 due to the coronavirus health crisis, following "99 outbreaks on 123 different cruise ships" within U.S. jurisdiction between March 1 and July 10.

Carnival Corp. was contacted for further comment.

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