Brokerage Sanford C. Bernstein Ltd has revised downward its full-March gross gaming revenue (GGR) forecast for Macau, citing “weaker than expected month-to-date results.”
“Assuming a GGR average daily rate of MOP750 million [US$92.9 million] to MOP790 million for the remaining days of the month, we estimate March GGR to a range of MOP23.1 billion and MOP23.9 billion, an estimated year-on-year increase in March of 9 percent to 12 percent, revised down from prior estimate,” analysts Vitaly Umansky, Zhen Gong and Cathy Huang wrote in a Monday note.
The Sanford Bernstein team had forecast a week ago that GGR in Macau would increase by between 12 percent and 15 percent year-on-year for the full month of March.
The analysts said in their latest memo – quoting industry checks – that Macau’s GGR was approximately MOP8.1 billion for the first 11 days of March, translating to an average daily rate of approximately MOP736 million.
“GGR growth could surprise on the upside” in March, the Sanford Bernstein team however noted. “Several junket spring dinners will be held later this month which should increase GGR run rate above the current month-to-date trend,” it added.
In a separate Monday note, Japanese brokerage Nomura said it expected full-month GGR in Macau to increase by around 15 percent in year-on-year terms for March.
Analysts Harry Curtis, Daniel Adam and Brian Dobson wrote: “By segment, month to date we estimate that: average daily VIP volume is down approximately 10 percent to 15 percent versus the average in February; VIP hold percentage is approximately 2.8 percent, below the expected “normal” hold rate of approximately 2.85 percent; and mass GGR/day is tracking down approximately 10 percent sequentially.”
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Market-wide VIP baccarat revenue in Macau in the fourth quarter of 2018