BTW: Subbarao was a Humphrey Fellow at MIT. The Humphrey Fellowship is a US state dept. funded program for foreign students of economics. The fellowship is named for Hubert Humphrey, the Vice President during the Johnson administration who helped to craft the “great society” platform of heavy government spending on social programs intended to eliminate poverty that resulted in inflation and increased debt (which, combined with the unpopular Vietnam war, cost Humphrey the presidency when he ran against Nixon in 68).
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Currencies are not always a leading indicator of economic health. However, in this case, you can see quite clearly that the Won has previewed weakness in the KOSPI Index most recently (see chart).
The abrupt slowdown in Asian growth remains misunderstood.
That was the data point to take away from Kathy Burton's insightful Bloomberg article today, titled "Citadel, SAC Capital Get Pick of Casualties as Carnage Worsens"...
Despite people getting upset about it when I started writing about this 9 months ago, the facts appear to be bearing out on my side of the thesis.
Facts are stubborn little things, arent they.
Suffice it to say the hotel and retail mall are beautiful as expected. It is the Plaza Casino where we have some concerns. I’m still trying to reconcile the target market of high end mass market and direct VIP customers with the current casino configuration and product. More on that in another post. The casino appears to be in an unfortunate location at the very end of the current Cotai development. It’s not easy to get to since a) there is no direct turn-off for cars from the Strip to the Four Seasons (cars need to run all the way to the Lotus Bridge roundabout and then come back about 300+ yards) and b) as far from the main entrance of the Venetian as it can be. Easily a 10 minute walk for someone who doesn’t know their way around or is not heading straight toward the Plaza Casino at a fast pace.
In terms of volume, the Plaza Casino was pretty empty on Monday afternoon. My guys reported that only half the tables were even open and with only a total of 20 players in the room. Contrast this with The Venetian where the floor was quite busy at the same time. No complaints with The Venetian ramp as revenue trends and market share continue to move higher with the increase in ferry service. Back to the Plaza, we’ll keep you posted as more definitive conclusions can be reached.
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