As the decline in high roller visits continues, Macau casinos are suffering further falling revenue. March was the 10th month in a row that Macau saw declining revenue. This was the second worst month in terms of revenue loss, coming in with a 39% decline when compared to March of last year.
According to the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau, the gross revenue for March was just $2.69 billion. The lost revenue fell right in step with the polls by Bloomberg News, which estimated a 40% decrease. During the first quarter alone, revenue has dropped by 36.6%.
The decreases are a result in fewer VIP players visiting the casino and it is expected for revenue throughout the year to suffer from steady decreases. There is less of a desire for people to visit Macau due to anti-corruption measures that are being taken in China – although individual visits seem to be on the rise.
With the recent opening of Harbourview Hotel at Fisherman’s Wharf and the Broadway Macau debuting on May 27, there is hope that the second half of the year will show some slight improvement. As a whole, the Macau casino revenue fell 49% in February, setting a record. With the corruption crackdown enforced by Xi Jinping, the Chinese President, the VIP market has severely suffered.
China insists that the economy in Macau must diversify from gambling and casinos. Macau is the only area within China that offers legal gambling and when the sector opened to foreign competition back in 2002, it became the casino capital of the world, surpassing Las Vegas. Even with the falling revenue, the gambling income in Macau remains higher than Vegas.