Ray, Voyager of the Seas is to debut in Singapore in 2012. Yes, and I'm sure that there are three significant pieces to this story.>> 1. Like its competitors, the company needs to move its larger "post-Panamax" ships to Alaska to meet demand for cruises there. Since these ships are presently too large to transit the Panama Canal, it's not practical to send them to the Caribbean for the fall, winter, and spring. Thus, the company needs to open new markets where these ships can deploy, and the Pacific Rim is one viable option.>> 2. The company has a cadre of well-seasoned cruisers who are looking for new destinations. The Pacific Rim is one destination that will meet this demand.>> 3. The company also would like to develop the Pacific Rim as a potential market for its cruises, and offering itineraries that are close to home for people in that part of the world facilitates this.I suspect, over the next few years, that the company's Celebrity Cruises and Royal Caribbean International lines also will follow its competitors' lead in deploying larger vessels to Australian and New Zealand, Hawai'i (round trip from either Los Angeles or San Diego), and South America to support deployment of larger ships to Alaska. On a side note, I've noticed this stock enjoys a greater gain in bull markets and a worse loss in bear markets. A bit annoying given the climate of the market recently. Holding RCL for the long term though. Yes, there's no doubt that the market tends to oversell this stock very badly whenever there is adverse economic news -- but that creates an opportunity to buy it cheaply and to turn a huge profit simply by rebalancing one's portfolio. Its obviously best to do the rebalancing in a tax deferred account such as an IRA, Roth IRA, a company-sponsored retirement plan (401(k), 403(b), etc.) that affords you the option to buy inidvidual stocks to avoid taxes on capital gains, but the present tax on long term capital gains won't kill you too badly. Just make sure that the shares that you sell when you rebalance are shares that you purchased before the same date of the preceding year to qualify for "long term" status. (Yes, when you sell shares held in "street name" by your broker, you DO have the right to designate the lot(s) of shares from which you are selling.Norm.
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