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Carnival, headquartered in Miami, Florida, operates the world’s largest cruise company, carrying nearly forty-five percent of global cruise passengers through nine different business segments, including Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Seabourn, P&O Cruises (Australia), Costa Cruises, AIDA Cruises, P&O Cruises (UK), and Cunard.
The Elmensdorp Action alleges that, throughout the Class Period, the Defendants made materially false, and/or misleading statements, and failed to disclose material adverse facts about Carnival’s manifest inability to address the spread of infectious disease on its ships and the susceptibility of its ships to the transmission of such diseases among its crew and passengers. As a result of the foregoing, Defendants’ statements about Carnival’s commitment to the health, safety, and comfort of its passengers and crew members as well as its assurances to safeguarding passengers and crew and, thereby its profitability, were false and/or misleading and/or lacked a reasonable basis.
The Class Period begins on September 26, 2019, when Carnival filed its Form 10-Q for the quarterly period ended August 31, 2019, and a Form 8-K, in which Carnival purported to describe all the primary risks that potentially could impact Carnival and its shareholders, yet the 10-Q and 8-K entirely omitted any reference to the potential harm to shareholders that would be caused by Carnival’s inadequate facilities and preparation for a viral infection and/or other outbreaks of diseases on one or more of its ships. These omissions were consistent with a host of pre-Class Period statements wherein Carnival stated that the welfare of its passengers was paramount, but omitted any reference to its inability to adequately address the spread of infectious disease among passengers and crew members on its ships and its need to downplay outbreaks to maintain bookings and reservations.
In December 2019, a novel strain of coronavirus, COVID-19, was first reported in Wuhan, Hubei province, China. COVID-19 quickly spread to numerous countries and has since been designated a global pandemic by the World Health Organization. Carnival launched several cruise ships in early 2020, putting tens of thousands of passengers and crew at serious risk and turned Carnival’s ships into vessels for seeding the virus across the globe. On January 27, 2020, as COVID-19 spread beyond China, Carnival, however, claimed that the risks of COVID-19 posed to the company’s guests, crew, and global business were “very low.”
Carnival continued to double-down on its statements of “low risk” throughout the next two months by permitting cruises to continue (except those traveling to and from China or where quarantined by authorities) in the face of mounting cruise passenger illnesses and deaths on its own ships due to COVID-19, or soon after disembarking its own ships. On February 3, 2020, just a few days after Carnival reiterated that COVID-19 was “very low” risk to Carnival’s guests, crew, and business, Carnival admitted that a passenger who had been onboard its Diamond Princess ship, from January 20, 2020, through January 25, 2020, had tested positive for COVID-19. This diagnosis caused Japanese authorities to conduct a review of all guests and crew as the ship was docked in Yokohama, Japan, causing a delay in the next leg of the ship’s journey. On this news, the price of Carnival’s common stock declined $0.78 per share, or approximately 2%, from a close of $43.53 per share on January 31, 2020, to close at $42.75 per share on February 3, 2020. Similarly, the price of Carnival’s ADSs declined $0.45 per share, or 1.1%, from a close of $41.10 per ADS on January 31, 2020, to close at $40.65 per ADS on February 3, 2020.
Investors began to learn the truth about Carnival’s prior false and misleading statements through a series of additional disclosures to the market during the Class Period (on March 4, 2020, March 8, 2020, March 27, 2020, and April 16, 2020).
Finally, on May 1, 2020, and as a result of the many outbreaks on Carnival ships, as well as reporting that exposed the effects of Carnival’s actions and inactions, the United States House of Representatives opened an investigation into Carnival’s handling of COVID-19, initiated by a letter addressed to Carnival’s Chief Executive Officer requesting records regarding Carnival’s COVID-19 response (the “Congressional Letter”). The Congressional Letter, which cited prior outbreaks, stated that the request for records was based on concerns that Carnival was “ignoring the public health threat posed by coronavirus to potential future passengers and crew,” and that “officials at Carnival were aware of the threats to some of its ships and did not take appropriate actions, which may have led to greater infections and the spread of the disease.”
On this news, the price of Carnival’s common stock declined $1.97 per share, or 12.4%, from a close of $15.90 per share on April 30, 2020, to close at $13.93 per share on May 1, 2020. Similarly, the price of Carnival’s ADSs declined $1.49 per ADS, or 10.7%, from a close of $13.92 per ADS on April 30, 2020, to close at $12.43 per ADS on May 1, 2020.
As a result of the revelation of the truth about Carnival’s inability and unwillingness to deal with the spread of infectious diseases on its ships, Carnival investors who purchased shares on U.S. exchanges lost billions of dollars when Carnival’s shares declined following the corrective revelations.
If you are a member of the class described above, you may no later than July 27, 2020 move the Court to serve as lead plaintiff of the class, if you so choose.
Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check prosecutes class actions in state and federal courts throughout the country involving securities fraud, breaches of fiduciary duties and other violations of state and federal law. Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check is a driving force behind corporate governance reform, and has recovered billions of dollars on behalf of institutional and individual investors from the United States and around the world. The firm represents investors, consumers and whistleblowers (private citizens who report fraudulent practices against the government and share in the recovery of government dollars). For more information about Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, please visit www.ktmc.com.
Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP has filed a complaint in this matter (see “View Complaint” above to read full complaint). If you wish to discuss this action or have any questions concerning this notice or your rights or interests with respect to these matters, please contact Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP toll free at 1-844-887-9500 or 1-610-667-7706, or via e-mail at email@example.com. If you would like additional information about the suit, please click on the link "Submit Your Information" above and fill out the form as promptly as possible.
Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP
James Maro, Jr., Esq.
Adrienne Bell, Esq.
280 King of Prussia Road
Radnor, PA 19087