Bright future seen for gaming growth

Despite short-term headwinds from China’s slowing economy and trade friction with the U.S., analysts remain optimistic Macau will retain its crown as Asia’s top gaming hub. According to analysts at Jefferies, who recently initiated coverage on the territory’s six operators, tax cuts in China, credit easing and China’s migrant salary ‘hump’ will be the next drivers for gaming growth. “Mass market will continue to outpace VIP with the Chinese outbound tourism market still untapped and still under-penetrated – only 11.6 percent of the population traveled abroad last year. Look for the next wave of potential Chinese travelers as another 240 million workers hit the income distribution salary hump within the next 7 years, which previously took 20 years,” it said in a research report. “Individuals surpassing the RMB3,500/month personal income threshold (currently around 238 million people) will be a key driver for future visitation,” said the analysts. The brokerage is also optimistic on...

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