Macau Casinos Win $2.4B, Government Claims Gaming Crimes Down

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Posted on: February 1, 2024, 11:27h. 

Last updated on: February 1, 2024, 11:55h.

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Macau casinos reported gross gaming gross (GGR) of MOP19.33 cardinal (US$2.4 billion) successful January 2024, a 67% year-over-year surge and 4.1% amended than successful December.

Macau casino gross ChinaThe Galaxy Macau casino edifice connected nan Cotai Strip. Macau casinos won $2.4 cardinal to statesman 2024 strong. The January haul represented a 67% surge complete January 2023. (Image: Bloomberg)

Macau’s beardown commencement to nan caller twelvemonth was nan Chinese casino enclave’s second-best month, post-COVID-19. Only 1 period past twelvemonth — October — generated much gaming money for nan six casino operators than did January.

January continues nan affirmative pandemic betterment momentum for what was nan world’s richest gaming manufacture earlier nan coronavirus. Macau casino revenue returned to astir 63% of nan market’s 2019 level successful its first twelvemonth of recovery. That’s aft China President Xi Jinping did distant pinch his arguable “zero-COVID” argumentation successful precocious 2022.

Analysts are forecasting nan recovery to proceed successful 2024. Researchers astatine Morgan Stanley deliberation Macau casino gross will return to astir 80% of pre-COVID levels this year.

Macau is coming a vastly different operating ambiance for nan casinos. The days of junket groups regularly bringing successful VIP gamblers from nan mainland are gone. That’s aft nan Chinese authorities directed Macau to amended scrutinize nan recreation organizers.

The prosecution of Alvin Chau, nan erstwhile Suncity Group boss, resulted successful an 18-year situation condemnation for crimes of gambling offenses, fraud, and money laundering. That saw astir junket groups fold shop.

Serious Crimes Decrease

Macau’s Judiciary Police this week released its 2023 study connected enclave crime.

The filing showed that nan wide number of gaming-related criminal incidences climbed 182% past twelvemonth to 2,717 cases. The spike was expected, arsenic normal life successful Macau and China remained connected clasp successful 2022 because of zero-COVID.

With 2023 being nan twelvemonth China and its 2 Special Administrative Regions (SARs) reopened and Chinese group became free to move astir nan country, crime people returned. However, rule enforcement successful Macau says nan number of offenses was importantly reduced compared pinch 2019.

The gaming manufacture successful Macau is processing healthily successful nan correct direction, and superior crimes specified arsenic forbidden gambling and money laundering done gaming operations person fundamentally disappeared,” said Judiciary Police Commissioner Sit Chong Meng.

Sit explained that nan number of gaming crimes was down 50% from 2019. Police besides intercepted immoderate 11K money exchanges betwixt criminal associates. Law enforcement successfully prosecuted much than 2,000 pack members who are nary longer allowed to participate nan enclave’s casinos.

Stock Gains

January’s fruitful gaming gross study provided shareholders pinch gains. Shares of Las Vegas Sands, MGM Resorts, Wynn Resorts, Melco Resorts, Galaxy Entertainment, and SJM Resorts were each up connected Thursday.

Analysts are optimistic astir February successful position of GGR. The Chinese Lunar New Year successful 2024 comes successful February, pinch astir workers passim China afforded 8 days of paid clip disconnected from February 10 — nan existent caller twelvemonth day — done February 17.

The “Year of nan Dragon,” nan 2024 New Year holiday, is delivering beardown bookings for casinos successful Macau. Most luxury casino resorts connected nan Cotai Strip are afloat booked aliases person only minimal readiness during nan vacation period. The mean nightly complaint for a five-star casino edifice room is astir $400.

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