Macau Q3 GDP drops for first time in five years

Macau’s quarterly gross domestic product fell by 2.1 percent year-on-year entering negative territory for the first time in five years as gaming revenue slumped, according to official figures from the Census and Statistics Service.
The figures showed a fall in the export of services, with the export of gaming services widening to 12.3 percent and other tourism services down 0.7 percent.
However, private consumption expenditure was up by 7.2 percent and government final consumption expenditure gained 8.1 percent, while private investment soared by 41.5 percent, “indicating the domestic demand remained vigorous.”
Economic growth for the first three quarters of 2014 narrowed further to 6.0 percent in real terms.
Macau’s gross gambling revenue declined for the first time in five years in June and has fallen every month since, accelerating to a 23.2 percent drop in October, the worst on record. A clampdown on corruption in mainland China, a slowing Chinese economy and tight credit have all been blamed for the drop off.
However, separate figures showed that the number of workers in the gaming industry continued to swell, outpacing growth in any other industry in Macau.
The combined workforce increased to 84,600 in the third quarter of this year, up 3.8 percent from the second quarter.
The restaurant industry’s combined workforce increased by 2.8 percent to 28,500 and the retailing industry’s increased by 0.9 percent.
The overall unemployment rate stood at 1.7 percent.