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What Happens in Vegas Now Happens in Macau

|Includes: Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS), WYNN

 How to take advantage of Macau’s emergence as world’s No. 1 gambling market


Macau overtook Las Vegas as the world’s No. 1 gambling market over three years ago.  Once a seedy sideshow to nearby Hong Kong, Macau now draws millions of Mainland China visitors, who can’t legally bet at home.  There are 3 billion people in a travel radius around Macau!

After Macau gambling monopoly ended in 2002 after the China regained control in 1999, the former Portuguese colony quickly passed Las Vegas as the world’s largest gambling market.  Macau casino revenue climbed 10% in 2009 and has continued at a record pace in 2010.  U.S. investors such as the Wynn and Sands groups came to the region and built Las Vegas-style casinos.  Sands’ Macau Venetian – even larger than its Las Vegas twin – opened in 2007 as the new flagship of Sands Asia.  The massive complex includes the world’s largest casino and 3,000 luxury suites.  Big spenders from China have flocked to the resort, even during the global economic downturn that hurt tourism in other parts of the world.  China’s economy grew 8.7% in 2009.

Las Vegas operators, Las Vegas Sands and Wynn Resorts are leveraging their casinos in Macau to boost growth.  Plus, rumors the government may limit the number of new casinos will only increase the value and attractiveness of these resorts. Last year was not good for either of these companies, but revenue growth is beginning to accelerate and some analysts forecast huge earnings increases in 2010.  Sands earned back its $260 million investment in Macau in less than a year.

I think both Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS) and Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ:WYNN) are well poised to begin new, major advances.

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Disclosure: "Long LVS & WYNN"