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Old 02-06-2009, 09:20 AM
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Here is an excerpt of Richard Fain's comments from the transcripts of the earnings call:

"Pricing is still way lower than we would like. But the reason we are encouraged is that it seems that those prices are beginning to reach an equilibrium level. This gives us the opportunity to utilize our yield management tools on a mortal productive basis, and it gives us some feeling of comfort that there is a level of price elasticity, around which we can manage. At the same time, we are also finding that going to extreme pricing discounts in order to fill the very last cabin may not be as productive as has historically been the case. As a result, our yield projections include an assumption that we will accept slightly lower occupancy levels in order to keep pricing up and to maximize yields."

From CFO Brian Rice:

"...our customers have traditionally booked their cruise approximately five months prior to sail date. Since the economic environment began deteriorating in September, we have seen a steady contraction in the booking window. And today our average customer is booking a departure only about four months away."

Discussing the changes to their business model, Mr. Rice said "as we move closer to sailing date, the period when consumers are ready to buy, we can achieve significant improvement in booking volumes without further price deterioration."

The above quotes are used with the permission of Seeking Alpha. The entire transcript can be viewed here at the Seeking Alpha website.
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