LEISURE & ENTERTAINMENT | Staff Reporter, Macau

Gross gaming revenue feared to plummet by 36%

And a 1% m/m decline.

In Macau gaming, it has been noted that August GGR could see 36% y/y decline, 1% m/m decline.

According to a research note from Barclays, assuming daily revenue returns to HK$553mn for the rest of August (the full-month average daily table revenue for July) plus HK$1bn for slots, Barclays expects the full month gross gaming revenue (GGR) for August to be down 36% y/y to HK$17.8bn (MOP 18.4bn).

This would be weaker than the 34.5% y/y GGR decline in July and our previous expectation for a decline of 33% for August.

Barclays' full-month assumption would also imply a 1% m/m decline compared with m/m growth for August of 2% in 2011, 6% in 2012, 4% in 2013 and 2% in 2014.

Here's more from Barclays:

Average daily table revenue soft at HK$521mn for the period 1-9 August: This figure was 6% lower than that for the full month of July, which saw daily table revenue of HK$553mn. There were some reports of low hold rates at certain properties.

While the data for August were softer than we had expected, we would highlight that this is just nine days of weaker data (following the strength in July), which might not be representative of longer term trends.

We note that this full month rate would put January-August 2015 average monthly GGR at MOP 19.8bn: This is below the threshold of MOP 20bn that the government has previously mentioned as the threshold at which it would consider austerity measures.

We believe if further weakening happens, there is chance that the government could explore supportive policies for the gaming industry.

We continue to look for a 32% GGR decline this year, and 3%/10% growth in 2016/17E. Our preferred stock is Sands China due to its attractive 5.4% dividend yield; and while VIP can remain weak, we believe the mass segment to return to growth if there are no further restrictive policies. 

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