Date
17 December 2017
Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance Francis Tam expects to see a turnaround in gaming revenue only in the second half of 2015. Photo: Bloomberg
Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance Francis Tam expects to see a turnaround in gaming revenue only in the second half of 2015. Photo: Bloomberg

Macau casinos see worst revenue drop in October

Macau casinos saw the sharpest year-on-year drop in monthly revenue in October since the world’s largest gambling hub started keeping records in 2005.

Gross revenue for the month plunged 23.2 percent to 28.02 billion patacas (US$3.51 billion) compared with the same period last year, the fifth consecutive month of decline since June, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau said.

Revenue climbed 9.6 percent from September, while gross gaming revenue for the 10 months to October edged up 2.3 percent to 303.96 billion patacas from a year earlier.

It is widely believed that the downward pressure on the gaming industry is the result of China’s economic slowdown and the central government’s campaign against corruption and extravagant lifestyle.

Revenue from its VIP market dropped 19 percent in the third quarter from the same period last year.

Secretary for Economy and Finance Francis Tam had earlier forecast that revenue would decline more than 20 percent for October despite a 17 percent year-on-year increase in the number of mainland visitors during the National Day golden week holiday.

He also said gaming revenue is expected to see a turnaround only in the second half of 2015.

“Assuming that November and December look more like September, we currently expect declines of 16 percent and 24 percent, respectively, to round out the year,” Union Gaming Research said in a note on Tuesday.

Revenue for December is expected to drop 24 percent year on year as Chinese President Xi Jinping is scheduled to visit Macau as part of the 15th anniversary celebration of Macau’s handover to China, which will cause further disruption to the VIP segment, it said.

Gaming stocks fell after the results were released. Wynn Macau (01128.HK) saw its shares drop 3.4 percent to close at HK$27.25. Sands China (01928.HK) shares fell 3.3 percent to HK$46.8, while Galaxy Entertainment (00027.HK) and SJM (00880.HK) declined 2.8 percent and 2.3 percent respectively.

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JH/JP/CG

EJ Insight reporter

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