Shares of casino stocks were rising Thursday, led by Wynn Resorts ( WYNN), which had its price target raised by an analyst. Wynn was trading up 11% to $30.76. Bernstein Research analyst Janet Brashear raised Wynn's price target to $30 from $27 and maintained an outperform rating, confident the company could meet its debt obligations. "The stock has held value relative to competitors who are more overextended as investors prize safety over growth," she said. "The company has a very small margin of error on the U.S. covenants, but we believe that any number of measures, including cost-saving initiatives, or Las Vegas performance in excess of our conservative estimate, will give the company more room to maneuver," she wrote in a client note.
MGM Mirage ( MGM) was higher by 8.2% to $5.14. MGM received some positive comments from JPMorgan analyst Joseph Greff on Thursday, who saida meeting with Chairman and CEO Jim Murren this week showed that MGM is exploring various options -- such as asset sales, debt-for-asset swaps and bond-for-bond exchanges -- to help alleviate its financial pressures. The analyst noted that MGM appears to have a good relationship with its lenders, and that "the banks seem to be working closely with MGM to ensure the company makes it through this restructuring." MGM's $8.7 billion CityCenter project in Las Vegas also has faced speculation it might stall, but Greff said the company is confident the development will open later this year. "MGM indicated that it and the banks want to see CityCenter completed and that there are third parties out there who could help complete as well," Greff said.