Cruise stocks are sliding Wednesday afternoon after the CDC announced that its "conditional sailing order" barring cruise ships from departing the US, or sailing through its waters, will remain in effect until Nov. 1, meaning the cruise industry will remain frozen in one of its biggest global markets.
An index tracking performance of stocks tied to cruise lines, hotels and resorts tumbled on the news.
Cruise and travel stocks had been moving higher in recent weeks as data showed domestic air travel surging back toward its pre-pandemic levels. Miami had to declare an emergency order to combat a flood of spring breakers, and investors bet that pent up energies would be excised in a flood of travel. However, travelers hoping to enjoy a cruise will need to wait until the fall.
The cruise industry earned the ire of public-health officials when some of the earliest trans-national COVID outbreaks last spring occurred aboard cruise ships. One line, the Carnival-owned Princess Cruises, was involved in outbreaks from Japan to Australia to the US, and beyond.
Some on twitter joked about the CDC exacting its revenge by killing the entire industry.
The CDC casually putting the entire cruise industry out of business pic.twitter.com/hzdubOP6Kn— Jake (@jakecorsi) March 24, 2021
In the US, COVID cases have hit a plateau, something that Dr. Anthony Fauci said in an interview earlier that he was still concerned about, as scientists scout for signs that mutant strains are driving another wave in the US. Earlier this week, Dr. Fauci warned that the third wave in Europe could spark another wave in the US.
Meanwhile, the LA Times reported Thursday that a cruise industry lobbying group was pressing the CDC to lift its moratorium immediately. Looks like that's not going to happen.