Macau recovery inches forward with first overseas arrivals since pandemic approved

May 23, 2022 8:51 AM ETSands China Ltd. (SCHYY)MGM, GXYEF, SCHYF, WYNMF, WYNMY, WYNN, LVS, MCHVF, MCHVY, SJMHF, SJMHY, MLCO, MSCBy: Clark Schultz, SA News Editor

Macau cityscape at night, all hotel and tower are colorful lighten up with blue sky, Macau, China.

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Gross gaming revenue in Macau showed a slight improvement last week, but remained below EBITDA break-even levels, according to checks by Jefferies.

Analyst David Katz said there is some incremental progress with visitation to the gambling mecca as Portuguese non-resident nationals will be allowed to enter Macau after May 27. That will mark the first non-Greater China (Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan) overseas arrivals since the pandemic went global in March of 2020 and overseas non-resident arrivals were banned in Macau. The entry requirements are tough with visitors not being allowed to have traveled outside China, Macao, Hong Kong or Portugal for 21 days before arrival and providing a valid negative COVID nucleic acid test before arrival.

Over the last week, COVID infections in Beijing, Shanghai, Sichuan and Tianjin accounted for 95% of the total of 1,268 cases in China.

The small step forward is not enough to flip Jefferies into a Macau bull with the full GGR recovery said to be appearing to be pending the National Party Congress meeting in Q4. MGM Resorts (MGM) is one of Jefferies' top global casino picks, while Galaxy Entertainment (OTCPK:GXYEF) and Sands China (OTCPK:SCHYY) (OTCPK:SCHYF) are the top Hong Kong-traded picks at the firm.

Macau casino stocks: Wynn Macau (OTCPK:WYNMF, OTCPK:WYNMY), Wynn Resorts (WYNN), Las Vegas Sands (LVS), MGM China (OTCPK:MCHVF, OTCPK:MCHVY). MGM Resorts (MGM), SJM Holdings (OTCPK:SJMHF, OTCPK:SJMHY), Melco Resorts & Entertainment (MLCO), Studio City International (MSC).

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