Macau Gaming Revenue Misses Estimates In May: What You Need To Know
According to data released by the Macao Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau, gaming revenue in the month of May came in at 18.3 billion patacas, about 9.6 percent lower than April 2016’s number.
The 9.6 percent decline came up short of analysts’ consensus expectations of a 8.0 percent drop.
Shares of Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ: MPEL), Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE: LVS), MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) and Wynn Resorts, Limited (NASDAQ: WYNN) all opened Wednesday's session trading down by more than 0.9 percent after a mixed May.
Still Searching For A Bottom
April marked the 24th consecutive month of year-over-year (Y/Y) negative gaming revenue growth in Macau. Y/Y comps look to get a bit easier starting in June, and Macau investors are looking to cap the losing streak at around two years.
February 2015 marked the high point for gaming revenue declines at -48.6 percent. November's GGR of only 16.4 billion patacas represented the lowest monthly gaming revenue total for Macau during the current downturn, but investors are still watching to see if it ends up being the absolute bottom of the current cycle.
The Bad News Keeps Coming
Macau has seen a seemingly constant stream of bad news over the past two years:
- In 2014, the Chinese government announced a crackdown on corruption in Macau.
- Increased government scrutiny coupled with a weakening Chinese economy led to a major falloff in VIP gamblers.
- In September 2015, headlines of potential junket embezzlement of up to $258 million dollars had investors worried about even more government regulation down the road.
- Macau’s new ban on phone betting began on May 9.
In addition, fears surrounding the impact of a potential smoking ban in Macau casinos have also weighed on share prices.
Shareholders of the four U.S.-listed Macau names are hoping that the worst of the selloff is now behind them. The stocks of the four Macau names are down between 12 and 60 percent in the past two years.
Disclosure: The author is long MPEL.
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