Casino gross gaming revenue (GGR) in Macau rose by 20.4 percent year-on-year in August, to nearly MOP22.68 billion (US$2.81 billion), according to data from the city’s Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau, released on Friday. It marked the 13th consecutive month of year-on-year GGR growth in the market.
The GGR tally for August might have been higher but for the disruption caused to the city late in the month by an exceptionally powerful typhoon, said several investment analysts. Following Typhoon Hato on August 23 – which brought with it winds of more than 200 kilometres per hour (124 mph) – some hotels and casino resorts temporarily suspended their operations, as they sustained damage and suffered power cuts and interruption to water supply.
August casino GGR growth “was nicely above recently revised consensus of +18 percent,” said a Friday memo from Grant Govertsen of brokerage Union Gaming Securities Asia Ltd.
“As we noted last week in our series of on-the-ground notes post-typhoon, we believed that trends were returning to normal quite quickly and still expected a growth rate of 20-percent+ for the month,” he added.
Several brokerages mentioned the typhoon shaving anywhere between several hundred basis points (bps) and 600 bps from year-on-year growth in August GGR. Some analysts had – prior to Typhoon Hato – forecast year-on-year GGR growth of up to 25 percent for August.
Macau market’s GGR tally for the first eight months of 2017 stood at MOP172.02 billion, up 19.1 percent from the prior-year period, according to the official data.
Banking group Morgan Stanley said in a note earlier this week that notwithstanding the storm, it expected Macau GGR to “rebound sharply” in September, with “VIP to recover faster than mass”.
In Friday’s note, Mr Govertsen said: “We further expect September to be in the high teens. All-in, the thir quarter 2017 growth rate could shake out to be broadly in-line with the second quarter growth rate in the low 20 percent range.”
(Updated at 2.46pm, Sept 1)
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Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings