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MGM Resorts Quarterly Loss Narrows as Betting Rises in Macau

Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- MGM Resorts International, the largest casino operator on the Las Vegas Strip, said its loss narrowed in the fourth quarter as results improved at casinos in Macau and Nevada.

The net loss shrank to $38.3 million, or 8 cents a share, from a loss of $1.2 billion, or $2.50, a year earlier, the Las Vegas-based company said today in a statement. Excluding some costs, profit totaled 11 cents, compared with a loss of 1 cent, the average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Revenue rose 9.5 percent to $2.51 billion, compared with the $2.47 billion average of analysts’ estimates.

The results reflect the continued strength of gambling in Macau, the only place in China where casinos are legal, along with the recovery in Las Vegas. Industry revenue in Macau grew 24 percent in the fourth quarter to $12.5 billion, according to the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau there. Revenue on the Las Vegas Strip rose 9 percent to $1.75 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg Industries.

The company owns just over half of MGM China Holdings Ltd., which operates a casino in Macau and is building another. MGM Resorts, with $13 billion in long-term debt as of Sept. 30, has sold assets and refinanced obligations since borrowing to buy and build resorts such as CityCenter in Las Vegas before the 2008 financial crisis. The company lost $1.22 billion, or $2.50 a share, in the same period a year earlier after writing off land in Las Vegas and Atlantic City, New Jersey.

MGM Resorts, whose largest shareholder is billionaire Kirk Kerkorian, fell 0.1 percent to $25.82 at 9:39 a.m. in New York. The stock has doubled in the past year.

(MGM Resorts plans a conference call at 11 a.m. New York time. Visitor the investor page www.mgmresorts.com to listen.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Christopher Palmeri in Los Angeles at cpalmeri1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net

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