Gross gaming revenue (GGR) in Macau grew 5.7% year-on-year to MOP$24.3 billion (US$3.01 billion) in February 2018, data released by Macau’s Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) showed.
Accumulated gross revenue increased 19.7% year-on-year in February to MOP$50.5 billion.
The Chinese New Year holiday impacted negatively on February GGR, in contrast with a very strong January that recorded a 36.4% increase year-on-year.
A Thursday note by boutique investment bank Union Gaming forecast an increase in GGR of around 18% for the first quarter of 2018, with a recovery noticeable in the second week of March and “a strong trajectory going forward.”
It also highlighted that the annual results recently released by the six major operators in Macau confirm “the strength in mass market as first reported by the DICJ in January.”
“The 4Q17 data as reported by the operators confirmed that mass/slots accounted for 52% of total GGR in the market,” said Union Gaming analyst Grant Govertsen. “In fact, mass/slots accounted for a majority of GGR in every quarter of 2017 and has also accounted for a majority of GGR for 10 consecutive quarters. That mass market maintains remains robust bodes well for the gaming equities, particularly those that straddle both mass market and resurgent VIP.”
Brokerage Bernstein said the combined figures of January and February matched its forecast and estimated growth of between 12% and 15% for March 2018.