Carnival Says Cruise Ship Fire Will Hurt Earnings

Carnival Corp., the world's largest cruise line, said on Tuesday it expected second-quarter earnings to be reduced after a deadly fire last week damaged its Star Princess ship and forced the cancellation of several cruises.

Carnival (CCL) said the canceled trips and the cost of repairs to the ship, expected to go back into service on May 15, would cut earnings per share by about 4 cents to 5 cents for the second quarter as well as for the full year.

One passenger died and 11 were injured after a blaze broke out on the passenger decks of the Star Princess last Thursday. The fire severely damaged the ship, which was carrying 3,800 passengers and crew from the Cayman Islands to Jamaica.

The earnings hit is a latest blow for Miami-based Carnival.

The company reported disappointing first-quarter results and a weak outlook for bookings, pounded Carnival's stock, which is now down about 10 percent so far this year.

Carnival shares shed 37 cents at $47.76 in early trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

The company said that in addition to previously announced Caribbean cruise cancellations for March 26 and April 2, it now expects to also cancel cruises for April 9, 16, 23 and 30.