Macau’s gross gaming revenue plummeted 18% week-on-week for the seven days from 8 to 14 November, impacted by extremely low hold in the VIP segment.
According to a weekly GGR update by brokerage Bernstein, average daily revenue was MOP$194 million (US$24 million), down from MOP$235 million (US$29 million) in the first week of November despite visitation to Macau remaining relatively flat.
“Last week, VIP hold in Macau may have been below 1.5% and is trending around 2.2% for the month, well below the normal level of around 3%, which has impacted negatively the average daily GGR figure,” said Bernstein analysts Vitaly Umansky, Louis Li and Kelsey Zhu.
“Month to date, VIP average daily rolling volumes up ~80% [versus October] but hold was below normal, negatively impacting GGR, while daily mass GGR was up ~50%.”
The analysts estimate month to date GGR from 1 to 14 November was MOP$3 billion (US$374 million) with an ADR of MOP$214 million (US$27 million) – down 72% on November 2019 but 52% higher than in October.
Notably, visitation has been quite strong despite COVID-19 outbreaks in multiple provinces in mainland China, with average daily arrivals and departures sitting above 52,000. That represents a 159% improvement over October, 20% versus September and only 9% lower than the peak month of May.
“Macau’s visitation has been strong after the quarantine policy was lifted on 19 October and supported by pent up demand,” Bernstein said.
“However, due to the new wave of COVID outbreaks in China, Macau has imposed quarantine requirements on more than 30 cities and districts of 16 Chinese provinces. The development is something to continue to watch as it could derail recovery in GGR.
“We forecast November GGR to be down high 60% vs November 2019 and expect GGR improvement (which has just begun) to continue into December and January, but more significant travel impediment removals are not likely until next year.”