Macau’s third-quarter tourist price index has increased by a modest 0.71 percent quarter-on-quarter.
But the price index for accommodation rose by 9.14 percent sequentially “owing to higher hotel room rates during the summer holidays,” said the city’s Statistics and Census Service in a Monday press release.
“Meanwhile, seasonal sale of summer clothing and handbags drove down the price index of clothing and footwear by 7.91 percent quarter-to-quarter,” it noted, indicating such price decreases had helped to moderate the quarter-on-quarter performance of the overall index.
The index reflects price changes in goods and services typically purchased by visitors, but excludes gaming. The majority of gamblers in Macau’s casinos are nonetheless understood to be tourists, based on previous commentary of the local government and industry investment analysts.
Judged year-on-year, Macau’s quarterly tourist price index growth rate slowed again sequentially in the third quarter.
Information from the statistics bureau indicated it increased by 0.90 percent year-on-year, to 130.78 points in the three months ending September 30.
The overall Macau tourist price index had gone up 2.78 percent year-on-year in the second quarter. In the first quarter the index rose by 6.15 percent.
Nonetheless the base for year-on-year comparison in the third quarter was robust, as such prices had risen 2.17 percent year-on-year in the third quarter 2017.
This year’s quarterly year-on-year increase was mainly attributable to rising charges for hotel accommodation and restaurant services, as well as dearer prices of local food products, said the statistics bureau.
The third quarter saw tapering in the retail prices respectively of handbags, clothing and jewellery; all elements in Macau’s tourism price index.
Nonetheless prices for accommodation (+5.57 percent) and food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco (+4.29 percent) saw significant growth.
But price indices for clothing and footwear, and miscellaneous goods decreased by 7.49 percent and 1.94 percent respectively year-on-year.
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"I am not going to speculate on what the [casino licence refreshment] tender requirements would be. I have full confidence and faith in the Macau government to treat everyone fairly"
Wilfred Wong Ying Wai
President and chief operating officer of Macau-based casino operator Sands China