Macau's Gambling Market Is Shrinking
The latest revenue numbers are out for the world’s largest gaming market, and they continue to fall well short of last year's marks. January gaming revenue in Macau fell 17.4 percent year-over-year, marking the eighth straight month revenues have slipped below 2014 levels.
January’s revenue number for Macau was 23.7 billion patacas for the month.
Not only did this number fall short of 2014’s number for January, it fell well short of 2013’s revenue for the month as well.
A look at the graph of monthly revenue indicates next month could be a particularly painful one for year-over-year comparisons in Macau. Last February marked the 2014 peak in monthly gaming revenue before a slowdown in the Chinese economy and a crackdown on money laundering in Macau by the Chinese government brought revenues crashing down in the second half of the year.
Unless Macau’s sees a more than 60 percent month-over-month jump in revenue in February, it will mark the ninth consecutive month of negative year-over-year growth.
Hope For 2015
The near-term outlook for Macau might not look great, but there are reasons to be hopeful longer-term. Four major casino operators have new Macau mega-resorts currently slated to open in 2015 or 2016.
Galaxy Entertainment Group plans to complete a $2.5 billion expansion to its Galaxy Macau property in 2015. Casino operators are hoping the novelty of these resorts will draw new visitors to Macau.
Disclosure: the author owns shares of Melco Crown Entertainment.
Image credit: Billy Au, Wikimedia
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