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Macau Gaming Still Improving, November Revenue Drop Narrows

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Macau, the world’s largest gambling hub, has witnessed decline in gross gaming revenues (GGR) in November. Since February, Macau gross gaming revenues have been decreasing sharply due to the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, revenues have declined in every month so far this year.

In November, gross gaming revenues from Macau fell to 6.75 billion patacas ($845.34 million), down 70.5% from the year-ago period. The coronavirus pandemic has been hurting the gaming industry severely as most of the casinos are witnessing lower traffic on account of the outbreak.  While the same was down 72.5%, 90%, 94.5%, 94.5%, 97%, 93.2%, 96.8%, 79.7% and 87.8% in October, September, August, July, June, May, April, March and February, respectively.

Decline in gambling revenues from Macau is likely to impact companies, including MGM Resorts International (MGM - Free Report) , Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited (MLCO - Free Report) , Wynn Resorts, Limited (WYNN - Free Report) and Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS - Free Report) , which generate majority of their revenues from Macau.

However, the industry on a whole has been showing resilience courtesy of its increased focus on streamlining of cost structures and optimization of business processes. Notably, companies have been focusing on the levels of services and staffing with selective amenities, and enhanced safety and social distancing protocols in the gaming floor to welcome gamers.

So far this year, the industry has declined 6.2% against the S&P 500's rally of 13.3%.

Sports Betting to Drive Growth

Moreover, with the legalization of sports betting in Delaware, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Montana, Indiana, Tennessee, Illinois and New Hampshire. Moreover, Connecticut, Kentucky, Michigan, Massachusetts, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, California, Oregon, Arizona, Montana, Colorado and other states, bettors are now able to place wagers through the digital platforms. Some of the popular igaming applications include DraftKings, Barstool, FanDuel, BetMGM, BetRivers, Fox Bet and BetMonarch. Markedly, the applications have been an important medium for gamers to connect, learn and inspire amid the stay-at-home restrictions.

Although majority of the casinos have reopened with safety protocols, gaming revenues are still very low in comparison to the pre-pandemic levels. In such a scenario, companies have been surviving by focusing more on iGaming business operations.  Per American Gaming Association, U.S. commercial gaming revenues for third-quarter 2020 were $9.04 billion, touching 81% of the industry’s pre-COVID levels in the prior-year quarter.

Bill Miller, AGA president and CEO said “While these quarterly results are promising, the reality is a full recovery is dependent on continued public health measures to control prevalence rates.”

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