Carnival Reducing New Stock Issue, Increasing Debt Flotation

Carnival's (NYSE: CCL)(NYSE: CUK) planned share issue will be significantly smaller than previously announced. Wednesday afternoon, the struggling cruise ship operator announced it is floating 62.5 million new shares of stock, which should bring in $500 million. 

The price per share will be $8, which is lower than the closing prices of both Carnival share classes on Wednesday. The company reiterated that it will use the proceeds of the issue "for general corporate purposes." It did not elaborate.

While downsizing the stock issue, though, Carnival increased a planned flotation of debt. It is issuing $4 billion worth of 11.5% first-priority senior secured notes, which mature on April 1, 2023.

This is to be accompanied by $1.75 billion in 5.75% senior convertible notes, also maturing on the same date. The initial conversion rate of the notes is set at 100 shares of common stock per $1,000 principal amount; this rate is subject to adjustment "in certain circumstances," in Carnival's words.

Carnival ship docked in China.

Image source: Carnival

Previously, Carnival announced its stock issue would total $1.25 billion, with the senior secured notes flotation bringing in $3 billion; it was increased due to higher-than-expected demand. The originally planned $1.75 billion level of the senior convertible notes remains the same.

As a cruise ship operator, Carnival has been hit very hard by the detrimental economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic. It has halted all of its cruises in the face of the outbreak.

On Wednesday, both Carnival share classes fell by over 30%. That was a much steeper rate than the declines of many top stocks and the broader equities market. 

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Eric Volkman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Carnival. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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