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Wynn Macau Leads Casinos Higher on Outlook: Hong Kong Mover

Wynn Macau Ltd. led gains in Hong Kong-listed gambling stocks after Deutsche Bank raised its estimate for casino revenue growth in Macau to 25 percent this year on spending by wealthy Chinese tourists.

Wynn Macau rose 8.6 percent to close at HK$23.35 after Karen Tang, a Hong Kong-based analyst for Deutsche Bank, raised her rating on the stock to buy from hold. That’s the biggest jump since Oct. 27.

Revenue at the world’s largest gambling hub may rise as spending by VIP or high-stakes gamblers who can bet as much as $250,000 a hand picks up, Tang said. Chinese visitors have fueled growth in the former Portuguese colony, the only place in the world’s most populous nation where casinos are legal.

“We turn from mild to very bullish,” after a trip to Macau, Tang, who previously forecast a 20 percent jump in Macau casino gambling revenue this year, wrote in a note dated March 12. “We think the market will be surprised by the recovery of VIP demand in the next few months.”

Billionaire Stanley Ho’s SJM Holdings Ltd., the world’s biggest casino operator by revenue, climbed 6.3 percent to close at HK$16.22. SJM’s 2011 revenue of $9.7 billion topped Las Vegas Sands Corp.’s $9.4 billion and Caesars Entertainment Corp.’s $8.8 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Casino gambling revenue in Macau last year climbed 42 percent to 268 billion patacas ($34 billion), and grew 28 percent to 49 billion patacas in the first two months of 2012, according to the city’s Gaming Inspection & Coordination Bureau.

Sands China Ltd. climbed 5.9 percent, MGM China Holdings Ltd. jumped 4.6 percent, Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd. rose 6.2 percent and Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd. rose 1.3 percent.

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