Macau Visitation Increases

Mar 24, 2010 3:44 PM

There may be fewer customers visiting U.S. casinos, but the trend hasn’t crossed the Pacific to Macau.

According to the Government of Macau, Special Administration Region Statistics and Census Service, February visitation increased 24.4% on easy comparisons with February 2009, even though revenues were down 17.3%.

Visitors from Mainland China increased a meaningful 38.1% and represented 55.7% of Macau’s total visitation, up from 50.1% in the prior-year period.

Visitors from the Americas were up 1.3% and those from Europe increased 10.6%, while visitation from Singapore and Thailand was down 14.7% and 34.2%, respectively.

Visitation has continued to increase at the former Portuguese conclave, due to the easing of visa restrictions, as well as benefits stemming from Chinese New Year.

Wall Street analysts view the increase in visitation as positive signs for U.S. casino operators in Macau, such as Wynn Resorts, which stands to benefit from a greater inflow of visitors, as it derives the greatest percentage of its property EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) from Macau at 67%.