Revenue from Macau's gambling region in March was in-line with analysts' expectations, sending American casino plays with exposure to the region higher in trading on Monday.
Macau casinos brought in $3.2 billion in revenue in March, according to Macau's Gaming Inspection and Coordination, the highest figure recorded so far in 2019. The total represented a 0.4% decline from the same period a year ago.
Analysts were expecting the region to post revenue that was between flat year over year and down 6% as the trade war between the U.S. and China weighed on business in the world's two largest economies.
Wynn Resorts (WYNN - Get Report) , which draws 69% of its revenue from Macau, according to Morgan Stanley, was up 6.3% in trading while Las Vegas Sands (LVS - Get Report) , which ranks second in exposure at 65% of revenue, rose 3%. MGM Resorts (MGM - Get Report) , which opened a new $3.4 billion resort in Macau in 2018, gained 3.3%.
A couple of brokerages lowered their revenue growth expectations last week ahead of Monday's release. Nomura published a note saying that softening in the average VIP gambling volume would result in a decline in revenue between 3% and 5% year over year.
Analysts at Bernstein lowered their estimate to a decline between 5% and 6% based on channel checks that showed there were fewer large-scale events by junkets for their customers.
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