Analyst reduces price target of Wynn Resorts

Mar 4, 2009 8:07 PM
Staff & Wire Reports |

Ongoing softness in Las Vegas and Macau led an analyst to cut the price target of Wynn Resorts Ltd. Wednesday.

The Las Vegas-based casino operator's stock sagged $1.07, or 6.2 percent, to $16.21 in morning trading. The shares hit a fresh 52-week low of $15.61 earlier in the session.

Dennis Forst of KeyBanc Capital Markets said Wynn saw its Macau market share decline in February and has continued to be squeezed by the Las Vegas market's woes, which includes increased unemployment and a spending pullback by consumers and businesses.

Both markets are also hampered by the effects of the global recession. The conditions have pressured some casino operators to cut jobs, cancel or suspend development projects and concentrate further on reducing costs.

"The skittish investment climate today does not augur well for any gaming company and we are afraid Wynn's shares will under-perform over the near term," Forst wrote in a client note.

The analyst slashed his first-quarter earnings per share forecast to 6 cents from 17 cents, and lowered his second-quarter estimate to 27 cents from 33 cents. Forst cut profit estimates for the third and fourth quarters and full year as well.

He lowered Wynn's price target to $13 from $18 and reiterated an "Underweight" rating.

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