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Is Royal Caribbean Cruises (RCL) Stock Outpacing Its Consumer Discretionary Peers This Year?

The Consumer Discretionary group has plenty of great stocks, but investors should always be looking for companies that are outperforming their peers. Has Royal Caribbean (RCL) been one of those stocks this year? By taking a look at the stock's year-to-date performance in comparison to its Consumer Discretionary peers, we might be able to answer that question.

Royal Caribbean is one of 281 companies in the Consumer Discretionary group. The Consumer Discretionary group currently sits at #10 within the Zacks Sector Rank. The Zacks Sector Rank includes 16 different groups and is listed in order from best to worst in terms of the average Zacks Rank of the individual companies within each of these sectors.

The Zacks Rank emphasizes earnings estimates and estimate revisions to find stocks with improving earnings outlooks. This system has a long record of success, and these stocks tend to be on track to beat the market over the next one to three months. Royal Caribbean is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy).

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for RCL's full-year earnings has moved 11.8% higher within the past quarter. This is a sign of improving analyst sentiment and a positive earnings outlook trend.


Our latest available data shows that RCL has returned about 31.2% since the start of the calendar year. At the same time, Consumer Discretionary stocks have gained an average of 5.5%. As we can see, Royal Caribbean is performing better than its sector in the calendar year.

One other Consumer Discretionary stock that has outperformed the sector so far this year is Sony (SONY). The stock is up 13.3% year-to-date.

In Sony's case, the consensus EPS estimate for the current year increased 0.3% over the past three months. The stock currently has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

To break things down more, Royal Caribbean belongs to the Leisure and Recreation Services industry, a group that includes 32 individual companies and currently sits at #72 in the Zacks Industry Rank. Stocks in this group have gained about 7.2% so far this year, so RCL is performing better this group in terms of year-to-date returns.

Sony, however, belongs to the Audio Video Production industry. Currently, this 8-stock industry is ranked #82. The industry has moved +13.5% so far this year.

Royal Caribbean and Sony could continue their solid performance, so investors interested in Consumer Discretionary stocks should continue to pay close attention to these stocks.

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Zacks Investment Research