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Gambling Stock Roundup: MGM Resorts Gains, Caesars Acquisition Loses

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Last week, a few analysts provided their opinions on revenue growth prospects in Macau and its impact on leading casino operators like Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS - Free Report) , MGM Resorts International (MGM - Free Report) , Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd. and Wynn Resorts Ltd. (WYNN - Free Report) . Meanwhile, Caesars Entertainment Corp. (CZR - Free Report) and its subsidiaries continued to proceed with their comprehensive financing plan. (See last to last week’s recap here: Gambling Stocks Roundup for May 19th, 2014).

Recap of the Week’s Most Important Stories

1.   Leading casino operators were once again in the limelight with concerns over decelerating revenue growth in Macau. Analysts of Nomura Securities and Wells Fargo & Company (WFC - Free Report) lowered revenue expectations for major players in this space for the month of May. They expect performance in Macau to remain a bit sluggish in 2014 due to a potential slowdown in VIP bets owing to decelerating credit growth. (Read More: Casino Stocks Tumble on Credit Growth Concerns.)

Consequently, results of Las Vegas Sands Corp., MGM Resorts International, Melco Crown Entertainment and Wynn Resorts could be hurt as these leading casino operators earn a majority of their revenues from Macau. However, the analysts remain positive over the long-term as this gambling hot spot continues to expand.

2.    Caesars Entertainment Corporation and Caesars Acquisition Company completed the sale of Harrah's New Orleans Casino. Following approval from the Louisiana Gaming Control Board, the property was sold by Caesars Entertainment Operating Company, Inc. to Caesars Growth Partners. The divestiture comes in the wake of the comprehensive financing plan announced by Caesars Entertainment. (Read More: Caesars Entertainment Soars on Funding Plan.)

3.    Another CZR subsidiary, Caesars Entertainment Operating Company, Inc. (CEOC), amended the time for its cash tender offers to purchase any and all of the outstanding 5.625% Senior Notes due 2015 and 10.00% Second-Priority Senior Secured Notes due 2015 from May 19, 2014 to Jun 3, 2014.

We would like to remind investors that recently the company had raised a floating rate loan worth $1.75 billion to pay down the borrowings of its subsidiary CEOC due in 2015. (Read more: Gambling Stock Roundup: WYNN Resorts, Las Vegas Sands in Focus.)

4.    Melco Crown Resorts Corporation, a subsidiary of Melco Crown Entertainment, announced that it will develop an "Edutainment" center at City of Dreams Manila – a leisure, gaming and entertainment destination resort currently under development at Entertainment City, Manila, Philippines – in collaboration with DreamWorks Animation. Set to open later in 2014, this edutainment center would be the first in the world with a play education-based interactive entertainment concept.

5.    Wynn Resorts announced in a filing the appointment of Stephen Cootey as its chief financial officer on May 16 with immediate effect. Cootey was appointed the company’s treasurer in Feb 2014 and senior vice president-finance in Jan 2014. He continues to hold both positions.


Last week, Caesars Acquisition Company and Caesars Entertainment Corporation experienced major declines by losing 6.59% and 2.54%, respectively. Market reacted positively on its efforts to improve financial condition after the leverage buyout in 2008, but the rally did not last due to long-term concerns. (Read more: Caesars Entertainment Soars on Funding Plan).

Another gaming stock, Boyd Gaming Corp. (BYD - Free Report) declined a meager 0.09%. However, the sluggish Macau environment could not dampen the performance of the big players like MGM Resorts and WYNN Resorts which gained on their expansion efforts.

Except Melco Crown Entertainment that declined 2.47%, all others gained over the last six months. MGM Resorts and WYNN Resorts gained 28.37% and 26.79%, respectively, over the last 6 months. Caesars Acquisition Company remained at the third position with a gain of 16.65%.


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What’s Next in the Gambling World?

This week, Iao Kun Group Holding Company Limited (IKGH) will report its first quarter 2014 results before the market opens on May 29, 2014. We note that gambling stocks have oscillated between gains and losses in recent sessions and investors can expect such movement in the coming days as well.

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