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Macau Casino Stocks Rebound On News Of Visa Ban Being Lifted

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Macau came out of nowhere and took the casino industry by storm a few years ago. They quickly became the casino gambling capital of the world, surpassing Las Vegas.

Now, they have fallen from grace almost as quickly as they rose. New laws regulating the amount of visits residents from mainland China can make to Macau have hurt the casino industry badly.

This week, casino stocks rebounded on the idea that the visa laws would soon be lifted by the Chinese government. “We expect the mainland Chinese visa restrictions to be lifted by mid-next year, which will drive a rebound in visitation into Macau once again. With this in mind, we still believe that the longer term fundamentals for Macau’s gaming sector remain sound,” said Macquarlie gaming analyst, Gary Pinge.

In addition to the visa restrictions, Macau has also been hurt by the growing worldwide credit crisis. A couple of Las Vegas casino companies have put plans of expansion in Macau on hold because of the crisis.

The companies have expressed an interest in continuing their projects down the road, but for now, expansion has slowed to almost a stand still in Macau. in response, stocks have dropped drastically.
The word of a possible lift of the mainland visa laws could be the news that will once again revive some of the delayed casino projects in Macau.
Foxwoods Casino Owners Considering Buyouts For Workers
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The current landscape of the casino industry in the US is that casino owners, whether tribal or not, are being forced to cut jobs. Their revenue figures are down and they simply cannot afford to keep paying all of their workers.
The Mashantucket Pequot tribe, which operates both the MGM Grand and Foxwoods casinos , is facing some crucial decisions in the next few weeks. Over 250 of their government employees have indicated that they would take severance packages if they were offered.
It is now up to the tribe to decide which of these employees they will offer the packages to, if any. The tribe has already cut jobs, and there is a chance that they will fire even more employees.
“With the casino industry, especially in tourist areas, down the way it is, it is not surprising that the Mashantucket tribe is looking for ways to reduce their operating costs. It is actually a pretty common practice when the economy falls the way it has,” said Eleanor Gentry.
In order to receive the buyout packages, tribal members must apply for them. At the current time, 286 members have applied. It is up to the tribe to now decide whether the workers that have applied have jobs that can be eliminated.

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