Macau’s casino gross gaming revenue (GGR) for July fell by 34.5 percent year-on-year to MOP18.62 billion (US$2.33 billion), according to data from the city’s regulator, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau, also known as DICJ. It was the 14th straight month of GGR retreat measured year-on-year.
The July numbers mean that Macau’s accumulated GGR for the seven months to July 31 now stands at MOP140.26 billion, a fall of 36.7 percent on the same period in 2014.
Judged month-on-month, the July 2015 tally showed an improvement of 7.3 percent.
Analysts at Credit Suisse AG in Hong Kong had expected a July decline of approximately 35 percent year-on-year and an uptick of around 7 percent month-on-month.
The bank said in a note previewing the July GGR numbers that it expected “fewer surprises” than the market has been accustomed to recently when Macau casino operators MGM China Holdings Ltd and Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd report their results on Tuesday and Thursday respectively. Sands China Ltd and Wynn Macau Ltd have already issued their second quarter results. SJM Holdings Ltd is due to report its quarterly numbers on August 12, and Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd is also expected to give its second quarter and half-year figures soon.
“The past two weeks, the second quarter result announcements have been serving as upside catalysts for the sector,” wrote analysts Kenneth Fong and Isis Wong of Credit Suisse in a note. “Sands China [Ltd] second quarter surprised the market by its ability on cost control that boosted margin while Wynn’s [Wynn Macau Ltd] earlier-than-expected opening of its new property (Wynn Palace) which is scheduled to open on March 25 (versus market expectation of second quarter) raised market hope that a differentiated product will revive market demand.”
Macau’s Chief Executive, Fernando Chui Sai On, last week confirmed that if Macau’s GGR tally for July came in at around MOP18 billion, his government would introduce austerity measures to control spending.
Cameron McKnight of brokerage Wells Fargo Securities LLC mentioned in a note on Friday that state media in mainland China had reported that the central government’s anti-corruption campaign was entering its third and final phase, moving from “tigers” to “mosquitoes” – low-level officials in rural areas.
Mr McKnight stated: “High-level corruption is still being pursued and the broader campaign is likely to remain a fixture for the next few years.”
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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