February 3, 2023



Why This Group Of China Gaming Stocks Is Jumping

3 min read

Gaming stocks with big Macau exposure soared Tuesday on reopening optimism tied to the world’s biggest gaming hub. China stocks surged broadly as a Chinese study showed that the winter Covid-19 wave might have peaked in major cities.


Melco Resorts (MLCO), which is based in Hong Kong, as well as Macau-linked casino stocks that trade over the counter in the U.S. notched some of the biggest gains Tuesday.

Those gaming stocks include Sands China (SCHYY), Wynn Macau (WYNMF), MGM China (MCHVF), Galaxy Entertainment Group (GXYEF) and SJM Holdings (SJMHY).

Wynn Macau parent Wynn Resorts (WYNN) jumped after Wells Fargo upgraded shares to overweight from equal weight. The firm’s analysts said the China reopening will help the gaming stock. MGM China parent MGM Resorts (MGM) and Sands China parent Las Vegas Sands (LVS) also rose modestly.

The Wells Fargo note comes roughly a week after UBS analyst Angus Chan wrote that Macau GGR (gross gaming revenue) could be lifted “significantly” from early 2023 after three challenging years.

Chan tied the shift to the “effective removal” of coronavirus quarantine requirements in China.

He said that while a nucleic acid test requirement remains in place, visitors to the Asia-Pacific casino hub will no longer be required to quarantine for five days in addition to a three-day mandate to isolate at home. Both mandates will be scrapped on Jan. 8.

Separately on Tuesday, the South China Morning Post reported that researchers from Ruijin Hospital and Shanghai Jiao Tong University predict that the winter Covid-19 wave might have passed in major Chinese cities. But the country will see several more waves, including in rural areas, and a surge again at the end of the year, the researchers said.

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Macau-Exposed Gaming Stocks, China Stocks

MLCO stock popped 6.4% to 12.24 Monday.

Several OTC peers also notched big gains. Sands China climbed 6.3%. MGM China jumped 10%. Galaxy popped 4.8%.

WYNN stock rose 3.7% to 85.33 on the stock market today, after reaching as high as 86.50 intraday. The Wells Fargo note hoisted the stock’s buy point to 101, from 74.

MGM stock edged up 1.1% to 33.91 Monday, also trimming intraday gains. LVS stock advanced 1.1%.

Amid the new study suggesting a Covid peak in major Chinese cities, Alibaba (BABA) surged 5.3% Tuesday. Dada Nexus (DADA) rocketed 26.1%. Bilibili (BILI) soared 14.1% and iQIYI (IQ) rallied 16.8%.

Casino Stocks

Casino stocks had a volatile 2022 due to the uncertain regulatory state of the industry.

They tumbled last July after Macau — an administrative region in China and the world’s largest gambling hub — began a citywide lockdown to combat rising coronavirus cases.

Gaming stocks then soared after September as Macau signaled an easing of Covid-19 travel restrictions, making it much easier for people to return to the world’s largest gambling hub.


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