Macau has been through a lot for more than a year, as China was the country where the Covid-19 disease emerged. Last year, the celebration of the Chinese New Year was completely canceled, and things didn’t look so bright in 2021 either as there were far fewer tourists than anticipated. Nevertheless, the popular Asian gambling destination received the much-needed injection to boost its operation.
Hotel occupancy rates and visitation rates were not as high as the officials of Macau expected, due to ongoing Covid-19 concerns, in addition to travel restrictions. In other words, Macau was prevented from achieving the full recovery that it so desperately needs. Nevertheless, it seems that things don’t look that bad at the moment. As the Chinese New Year is over, things started to improve bit by bit. More coronavirus restrictions were lifted in the meantime, so that means Macau could see a better future soon. Let’s take a look at what the figures are saying.
JP Morgan’s Analysis
According to gaming analysts, GGR (gross gaming revenue) started improving at the end of the Chinese New Year. Both Sanford C. Bernstein and JP Morgan saw that there was a trend that showed improvement. Analysts from JP Morgan stated that the tail-end of Chinese New Year had been “quite decent.” Gross gaming revenue was approximately $725 million for the first 21 days in February, which is basically $34.5 million per day.
This is still an improvement when compared to the previous month, when the average daily GGR was between $31.2 to $31.5 million. Still, the daily run rate in the third week of February was much greeted compared to the first two weeks, as the daily run rate was $58.25 million on average — almost twice as much compared to the previous fortnight period.
The analysts at Bernstein disclosed similar data, showing that Macau’s performance increased throughout February, creating an optimistic atmosphere among tourists and operators alike. The analysts explained that the GGR in Macau “increased significantly during the third week of February.”
This was mainly due to the uptick in visitation during the last days of the Chinese New Year holiday period.
Despite that, the expectations are not fully met, as the full-month GGR for the second month of the year is much smaller than what many hoped it would be. According to various analyses, GGR is as much as 70% lower compared to the pre-Covid period. Therefore, despite signs of improvement, Macau is still a long way from reaching the desired figure.
Everyone hopes that the situation regarding the Covid-19 pandemic will improve soon enough and that countries around the world, including China, will completely lift travel restrictions. This will allow more visitors to travel to Macau and restore its former glory.
Things are looking great, as China has the virus under control at the moment, and Macau believes that there’s little risk of another big outbreak taking place in the country.
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