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Norwegian Cruise Line forecasts positive second-qtr operating cash flow

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings cruise ship Marina arrives at the Havana bay, Cuba March 9, 2017. REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini

(Reuters) -Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd forecast operating cash flow to be positive for the current quarter on Tuesday, as the U.S. cruise operator’s entire fleet returns to sailing after a hiatus due to the pandemic.

Shares of the company rose about 1% in pre-market trading, as the company also said that booking trends remained strong despite a hit from Omicron variant of the coronavirus and the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Norwegian Cruise Line (NYSE:NCLH), which saw about 60 cancellations or modifications to sailing due to the Russia-Ukraine war, said its booking momentum was temporarily disrupted due to the crisis, but added that the impact was “short-lived.”

Over the past two years, cruise operators have been burning through their cash piles, as the pandemic brought the industry to a standstill.

Norwegian, which completed its phased restart of operations earlier this week with all of its ships returning to sail, said higher ticket prices and onboard revenue also helped the company see improved cash flow in the first quarter ended March 31.

However, the company still expects to post a net loss in the current quarter, as it accounted for higher costs including fuel expenses.

The cruise operator also posted a bigger-than-expected loss of $1.82 per share in the first quarter.

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