CASINO

July headwinds keep Macau casino GGR growth at 10.3%

TAGs: gaming revenue, Macau

Macau casinos’ gross gaming revenue (GGR) chalked a 10.3 percent growth in July despite the headwinds it faced last month.

July headwinds keep Macau casino GGR growth at 10.3%Data from Macau’s Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau showed that the city’s GGR rose to MOP25.33 billion (US$3.13 billion) year-on-year in July, marking two full years of consecutive growth. The latest figure also represented a 12.6 percent sequential increase from June’s MOP$22.49 billion (US$2.81 billion).

The July results brought Macau market’s GGR tally for the first seven months of 2018 to MOP175.54 billion (US$21.64 billion), up 17.5 percent from the prior-year period.

However, gaming analysts were somewhat divided over Macau casinos’ latest GGR tally. StreetAccount consensus for Macau GGR was at 9.8 percent while Bloomberg Hong Kong consensus placed it at 11.5 percent.

International brokerage Union Gaming noted that the results were favorable given that Macau casinos faced three headwinds in July: unfavorable calendar with one fewer Sunday; toughest comparison of the year; and the World Cup, which drew some number of customers away from brick-and-mortar facilities.

The results nevertheless are in line with their 10 percent forecast, according to Union Gaming.

“That July grew 10 percent, or in line with our forecast, is something we view positively. July faced three headwinds,” Union Gaming analyst Grant Govertsen said in an industry update on Wednesday.

The international advisory firm forecast Macau’s GGR to accelerate by 13.8 percent and 14.7 percent in August and September, due to favorable calendar and an easy weather comparison.

Union Gaming noted that Typhoon Hato, considered to be the strongest storm to hit the former Portuguese enclave in 53 years, and Typhoon Pakhar took a big bite of Macau’s GGR during the months of August and September 2017.

For the full year, Union Gaming maintained its Macau GGR forecast of 16 percent assuming that it will see a 12 percent growth in the final quarter of the year.

International brokerage Sanford Bernstein also shared the same optimistic outlook on Macau casinos’ GGR in August, predicting that it would grow between 15 percent and 17 percent this month.

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