The first eight days of March reportedly saw the 39 active casinos in Macau post aggregated gross gaming revenues that were 79% lower year-on-year at approximately $174.9 million.

According to a report from Inside Asian Gaming citing a filing from brokerage Sanford C Bernstein and Company, the result puts Macau on course to record full-month aggregated gross gaming revenues of around $677.8 million, which would be significantly down on 2019’s March tally of about $3.2 billion.

Coronavirus consequences:

Macau is still recovering from the impacts of last month’s 15-day shutdown as well as the strict travel restrictions engendered by the ongoing coronavirus outbreak and saw its February aggregated gross gaming revenues plummet by 87.8% year-on-year to reach just over $387.2 million.

Continuing constraints:

The research from Sanford C Bernstein and Company analysts Kelsey Zhu, Eunice Lee and Vitaly Umansky reportedly detailed that the recovery of the casino sector in Macau is being particularly hindered by the ongoing near ban that remains in place for visitors arriving from the Chinese mainland.

However, Inside Asian Gaming explained that daily tourist numbers have recently improved by around 60% since late-February to about 8,000 while Macau even managed to crack 11,000 over the weekend with a stronger showing from the VIP segment being aided by higher holds.

Disappointing verdict:

The Sanford C Bernstein and Company filing nevertheless remained downbeat by reportedly pointing to the average 108,000 visitors Macau had managed to attract every day last year in advance of describing the current figures as ‘abysmal’ despite slow improvement.

Reportedly read the analysts’ advice…

“We estimate March potentially to be down between 75% to 80% assuming no significant improvement in visa issuance and travel, which would imply an average daily rate of $20.5 million to $26 million. Hold rate volatility could also impact our estimate. If VIP hold moderates and volumes do not improve, gross gaming revenues could easily be down more than 80%. The operators we have spoken with do not see any clarity on timing of recovery at this time.”