NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The returns are high today in the gaming sector, as shares of casino operators are rallying in afternoon trading. One of the biggest gainers is Las Vegas Sands ( LVS), which upped its expectations for its Macau initial public offering. Las Vegas Sands now predicts to rake in $3.35 billion from the deal. Sands said it will offer 1.87 billion shares, and forecasts an offer price between $1.34 and $1.79 a share. If the Sands deal goes through, it would easily top rival Wynn Resort's ( WYNN)Macau IPO, which raised $1.87 billion in October. Shares of Sands are climbing 7.3% to $16.46, on the news. Wynn declared a special cash dividend of $4 on Monday, which sent shares up 4.8% to $62.61. The dividend is payable on Dec. 3 to shareholders of record on Nov. 19. The company also said the board approved a regular cash dividend program, beginning in 2010. The regular cash dividend is expected to be 20 cents a share for the first quarter of 2010, payable in the second quarter. In other casino-sector news, Pinnacle Entertainment's ( PINK) CEO and Chairman Daniel Less unexpectedly resigned on Monday. The company named Richard Goeglein as interim nonexecutive chairman and John Giovenco as interim CEO, as they search for a permanent replacement. Analysts expect the interim replacements will help stabilize Pinnacle until a new CEO and chairman are named. But Lee's unexpected departure could translate to some uncertainty for shares going forward. For now, however, shares are up 3.9% to $9.06 in afternoon trading.
Ameristar Casino ( ASCA), meanwhile, is up 6.1% to $16.80, after being upgraded by Janney Capital Markets to buy from neutral. Analyst Brian McGill said the upgrade is a result of lower capital spending and probable market share gain from its Black Hawk casino property in Colorado. Other notable gainers include Boyd Gaming ( BYD), which is growing 6.1% to $8.18 and MGM Mirage ( MGM), which is up 5.4% to $10.28. -- Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York Follow TheStreet.com on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.