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Macau casinos surging along … so far

By: Emerging Money
Posted: 3/1/2011 10:10:00 AM
Referenced Stocks: LVS;MPEL

Gambling revenue in Macau surged 47.7% in February, but while Asia's high rollers are still coming in to spend their money, analysts are split on how long it can last. What is remarkable about news that Macau casinos boosted their cash flow so much last month is that the lunar new year holidays normally keep people away from the gaming tables. This time around, Macau actually booked 8% more revenue in February than it did in January. Naturally, February is also a short month and so if this continues, the growth trend should be spectacular for the rest of the year. MPEL ( quote ) and LVS ( quote ) are great ways to get exposure to this story we have been covering for awhile now. On the down side, any sense that China's elite are getting nervous would have a chilling effect here. High rollers contribute about 70% of the gaming enclave's income and some analysts are getting nervous about "tightening on the VIP side." The Chinese economy is definitely still growing , so the country's big fish should be feeling even bigger. But as liquidity tails off , the Bank of China seems to be gradually taking the punch bowl away. We may see the first impact of this in the elite casinos.