Bernstein analysts say that extending the current casino closure period could have a devastating impact on the SARs gambling industry.
Macau.- February could see a 95 percent year-on-year fall in gaming revenue, analysts at Sanford C. Bernstein predict.
The analysts said this would almost certainly be the case if the current casino closure related to the Coronavirus outbreak continues.
If the closure is extended, gaming revenues in February are likely to be around MOP1.26 billion (€144 million).
All 41 of Macau’s casinos have been closed for a two-week period since February 5. They were due to reopen from midnight February 20 but local authorities are now considering whether to extended the closure.
“There is a strong possibility of an extension of the shut-down order,” the brokerage indicated while noting that gaming revenues had already been negatively impacted by the current closure.
The Coronavirus crisis has seen a huge decrease in Macau visitor numbers since the outbreak was first announced, with China having stopped all group travel and the issuance of individual travel visas to the city.
Local gross gaming revenues dropped by 11.3 per cent year-on-year in January to MOP22.12 billion (€2.5 billion).
Police authorities revealed this week that the number of tourists entering Macau between January 27 and February 7 had dropped 90 per cent to just 174,000.