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NEWS 3 October 2016

Macau grows for second month after two-year decline

By Tom Lewis
Monthly gross revenue from games of fortune in Macau has grown for the second month in a row, rising to 18.4bn patacas in September for year-on-year growth of 7.4%.

The rate of growth has accelerated, with a climb of 1.1% in August pulling Macau out of a 26 month nosedive.

The peninsula is the only area on the Chinese mainland where casino gambling is legal, with the 26 months of decline to July influenced by President Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption crackdown and the weakening of the Chinese economy, which combined to lead to a fall off in the number of VIP gamblers.

Although analysts anticipate bumps in the road ahead, new resorts Wynn Palace and The Parisian Macao, which opened their doors in August and September respectively, are viewed as important to Macau’s recent turnaround.

Christopher Jones, Director of Equity Research for Buckingham Research Group, told Forbes: “Up until this period, all properties tried to be all things to all people, offering grind mass, mass, premium mass and VIP, all under the same roof.

“In the case of the Parisian and Wynn Palace, I think that [segmentation] was taken into consideration when both properties were developed and executed.”

Grant Govertsen, Analyst at Union Gaming Group, is quoted by Forbes as saying: “In our view, this strength must be attributable primarily to new supply in the market.

“We believe that Sands China heavily marketed the Parisian into mainland China in advance of the opening, and our observations across Cotai this past month would suggest this has paid dividends for the company as its central cluster has consistently felt busy.”

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