Bears Gamble on Las Vegas Sands
I'm not a gambler, but I like Las Vegas.
The summers are so hot that they remind me of the San Joaquin Valley, only with more lights and fewer grapes. I used to live there in the late 1980s, when the Mirage was the newest casino on the Las Vegas Strip and the burning question was whether the dolphins would survive the heat. (They're fine.)
I hadn't really been thinking much about Las Vegas lately until I read an article on Monday about the jobless rate in Nevada being up to 4.6% in May from 4.1% a year ago. That's a big number in Las Vegas because there have always been jobs galore -- all you had to do was decide where you wanted to work.
But don't think that the Las Vegas economy is shrinking, because it's not. The influx of people (particularly from the People's Republic of California) is still strong, but the job growth just isn't absorbing them as quickly.There are a number of reasons for the rise in unemployment, one of which is the recent statewide ban on smoking in public places (yes, you can still smoke in the casinos, but not in bars that serve meals). Now, there are a lot of smokers in Nevada, and banning smoking there is like banning guns at a gun show. But I digress. When I read about the job woes in Nevada, I decided to look at the resort and casino stocks to see how they are doing. Of course, MGM Mirage (MGM) has been on a wild ride over the past month, and Penn National Gaming (PENN) has done pretty well the past week since announcing that it will be taken private. But some of the other casino stocks have not been doing so well, including Wynn Resorts (WYNN) and Las Vegas Sands (LVS). My short idea for this week is Las Vegas Sands -- and here's why. The company is set to open the Venetian Macau mega-resort on Aug. 28. You'd think the stock would be catching some bids in anticipation of this event, but it's not. Let's take a look.
| Las Vegas Sands (LVS) -- Weekly
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass + 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV