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7. Wynn Resorts ( WYNN) began casino operations with the opening of Wynn Las Vegas in April 2005.

Steve Wynn, who as head of Mirage Resorts was responsible for building Treasure Island, the Mirage and the Bellagio in Las Vegas, spent roughly $2.7 billion to build the Wynn Las Vegas on the Strip. Wynn Resorts also holds one of six gaming concessions in Macau, a rapidly growing gaming hub in China. Wynn Macau opened in 2006 and Encore at Wynn Las Vegas opened in late 2008. Wynn is highly leveraged, with about $3.6 billion of debt on its balance sheet.

Outlook: Wynn shares are up 91% this year, including 28% in the past three months. The company reported a 42% rise in revenue at its operation in Macau in November, but that news was offset by the local government's nixing of the company's expansion plans.

Analysts are turning cautious on the company. Although nine have it rated "buy" or better, there are 15 "hold" ratings, one "underperform" and one "sell," according to First Call/Thomson Financial. Their median price target is $109. Shares are currently trading at $101.78.


6. American International Group ( AIG) is one of the largest insurance and financial-services firms in the world. It operates through a wide range of subsidiaries that provide general insurance, life insurance, lending and other financial services.

The company is on the comeback trail after its near collapse in the 2007-09 financial crisis. It was bailed out by the government. Since then, it has sold off various units to raise cash and it was reported this week that its planned sale of Nan Shan Life, its Taiwanese life-insurance unit, is attracting bids of up to $3 billion. And this week AIG, said it now has $4.3 billion in bank credit lines in a deal struck with 30 lenders.

Outlook: AIG is slowly recovering from its near failure. Its rise of 91% this year includes a 38% gain over the past month. Shares are up about 10% in the past week because of the expectation that it now has a clear plan to extricate itself from its past problems and pay back the government.

Respected Fairholme Fund ( FAIRX) manager Bruce Berkowitz has a big bet on AIG, making it 7% of his fund's assets.

Others are less optimistic about AIG's prospects. Analysts project five-year earnings growth of 9% versus 10.8% for the S&P500. It garners three "hold" and two "sell" ratings from analysts, according to FactSet.

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