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LVS and WYNN both hit an all-time low in market share.



September gross gaming revenues (GGR) increased 38% YoY to $2.64BN.  With the detail in hand, we can confirm that while growth was strong, the month was negatively impacted by a difficult hold comparison last year and low hold.  Assuming that GM’s direct play level was 4% in September, total direct play this month was 6.0% of the market, compared to 7.6% last year.  The total market held at 2.79% vs. 3.00% in September 2010. Normalizing for hold, September would have increased 47% YoY.  High margin Mass business increased 39% - just slightly lower than the 40-41% growth we’ve seen during the last 4 months.  VIP revenues increased 39%, while VIP Junket RC increased 52% YoY.  Slot revenue growth chugged along at 23% YoY – in-line with last month. 


Below are some other quick observations before we get to the monthly detail:

  • YoY Mass growth remarkably consistent the last few months - around +40% and higher than growth earlier in the year
  • MPEL Mass share down but VIP Rolling Chip and revenue share took a big jump up
  • LVS posted the first negative growth month of any operator since the ugly days of 2009 – somewhat hold related but Mass share was the lowest ever
  • As expected, September was a poor VIP month at Wynn.  Mass was a little better than the previous 2 months but still below the rest of the year
  • Great month for Galaxy despite low VIP hold % - Mass share was terrific while VIP volume was healthy

The Honk Kong operators continue to outperform.  We again would highlight the strength of MPEL relative to Street estimates.  We are currently 20% above the Street for Q3 EBITDA, a little below our prior estimate due to September’s shift from Mass to less profitable VIP.  



Y-o-Y Table Revenue Observations


Total table revenues grew 38% YoY this month, on top of 39% growth las­t September.  September Mass revs rose 39%; VIP revs grew 39%; and Junket RC rose 52%. 


For the first time since July 2009, LVS table revenues actually fell YoY.  Over the past 14 months, LVS’s table revenues have grown at roughly 1/3 of the market’s pace.

  • Sands was down 23% YoY, driven by a low hold. The YoY decline was driven by a 41% drop in VIP slightly offset by 12% increase in Mass
    • Junket RC was up 33%
    • Sands held very low in September and had a very difficult YoY comp.  Adjusted for 12% direct play (in-line with 2Q11), hold was about 1.74%, compared with 3.93% hold in August 2010 assuming 14% direct play (in-line with 3Q10). 
  • Venetian was the only property in the LVS portfolio to be up YoY. Table revenue increased 24% YoY, driven by a Mass increase of 13% and a VIP increase of 32%
    • Junket VIP RC grew 12%
    • High hold and easy comps helped Venetian in September.  Hold was 3.16%, based on 20% direct play vs. 2.53% in September 2010 assuming 23% direct play levels.
  • Four Seasons was down 50% YoY, VIP revenues took a 70% nose dive- mostly hold driven, which was slightly offset by 103% growth in Mass. 
    • Junket VIP RC fell 10% YoY – the worst performer in the market
    • Results were negatively impacted by low hold and difficult hold comparisons.  Assuming 40% direct play (compared to 41% in 2Q11), we estimate hold was just 1.2% compared to 3.3% in September 2010 assuming 41% direct play. Even if the direct play percentage fell to 35% -which wouldn’t surprise us, hold would still have only been 1.25% in September

Wynn table revenues were up 29%, negatively impacted by low hold

  • Mass was up 43% and VIP increased 26%
  • Junket RC increased 47%
  • Assuming 8% of total VIP play was direct (in-line with 2Q11), we estimate that hold was just 2.3% compared to 2.6% last year (assuming 13% direct play – in-line with 3Q10)

MPEL table revenues grew 38%, driven by Mass growth of 36% and VIP growth of 38%

  • Altira revenues rose 34% with Mass growth moderating to just 15% while VIP grew 36%, despite low hold and difficult comparisons
    • VIP RC increased 64% - the most of any mature property in September
    • We estimate that hold was 2.8% vs. 3.5% last year
  • CoD table revenue was up 39%, driven by 41% growth in Mass and 39% growth in VIP
    • Junket VIP RC grew 32%
    • Assuming a 13% direct play level, hold was 3.5% in September compared to 3.3% last year

SJM revs grew 33%

  • Mass was up 27% and VIP was up 36%
  • Junket RC was up 28%

Galaxy table revenues continued its streak of triple-digit gains, +129%; mass soared 272%, while VIP gained 114%

  • StarWorld table revenues grew 28%
    • Mass grew 43% and VIP grew 27%
    • Junket RC grew 43%
    • Hold was high at 3.1% but it was even higher last September at 3.5%
  • Galaxy Macau's total table revenues were $241MM, 13% lower than August's 
    • Mass table revenues rose 7% MoM to $46MM
    • VIP table revenue of $195MM, a decline of 17% MoM with RC volume of $7BN. Assuming 4% direct play, hold was 2.8%.

MGM table revenue gained 46% YoY, the slowest growth since August 2010

  • Mass revenue growth was 30%, while VIP grew 50%
  • Junket RC climbed 58%
  • Assuming a direct play level of 8%, we estimate that hold was 3.0% this month vs. 3.1% in Sept 2010 assuming direct play of 9% 


Sequential Market Share (property specific details are for table share while company-wide statistics are calculated on total GGR, including slots)


LVS share fell 50bps sequentially to 13.7% - another all-time low for LVS. This compares to 6 month trailing market share of 15.4% and 2010 average share of 19.5%

  • Sands' share dropped 1.6% to 3.4%, a new low
    • VIP rev share was only 2.2%, half of August's share
  • Venetian’s share rose 150bps sequentially to 8.5% share
    • VIP share gained 250bps to 7.0%, which is in-line with TTM average
    • Mass share dropped 2% points sequentially to 13% - below the 14% average for the trailing 6 months
    • Junket RC gained 30bps to 4.9%
  • FS share fell 50bps to 1.2%
    • VIP share dropped 70bps to 0.9%, lowest since June 2011
    • Mass share increased 20bps to 2.4%
    • Junket RC declined slightly to 1.3%

WYNN lost the most share for the 2nd straight month with a 1.7% drop to just 11.5%, an all-time low, which is much lower than its 6 month trailing average share of 15% and 2010 average share of 15%.

  • Mass market share was gained 60bps at 10.5%
  • VIP market share plummeted 250bps to 11.4%; WYNN has lost 5.3% share in VIP in two months.
  • Junket RC share rose 60bps to 13.5%, below its 6 month trailing average of 14.9% and 2010 average of 15.2%

MPEL market share rose 1.6% points to 16.1%, higher than its average 6 month trailing share of 15% and 2010 share of 14.6%.

  • Altira share gained 20bps to 5.3%, compared to a 5.6% average share in 2010; 30bps share in mass share offset a 60bps improvement in VIP share. 
  • CoD’s share climbed to 10.7% from 9.2% in August as VIP strength offset weakness in Mass
    • Mass market share declined 2% points to 8% 
    • VIP share soared 2.6% points bps to 11.6%

SJM share gained the most share in September, up 180bps to 29.0%, though it is still below its 6-month trailing average of 30.0% and 2010 average of 31.3%.

  • Mass market share gained 60bps to 36.7%
  • VIP share recouped 2% points to 27.3%
  • Junket RC share fell 140bps to 28.4%

Galaxy slipped 50bps share to 19.6%. September share compares with an average share of 10.9% in 2010 and a 6 month trailing average of 14.6%.

  • Galaxy Macau share gained slightly to 9.5%
    • Mass market share gained 100bps to 7.3%
    • VIP rev and RC share were both flat and up 20bps at 10.3% and 11.0%, respectively
  • Starworld slightly lost share to 9.6%, 50 bps above its TTM pre-Galaxy Macau level.

MGM share lost 80bps to 10.1% due to weaker VIP share. September share compares with an average share of 8.8% in 2010 and a 6 month trailing average of 10.4%.

  • Mass share recovered 160bps to 8.1% but was more than offset by a 150bps decrease in VIP share to 10.6%
  • Junket RC lost 70bps to 9.5%, still above the property’s 2010 average of 8.4% but below its 6 month trailing average of 10.4%


Slot Revenue


Slot revenue popped 23% YoY but was flat sequentially.

  • Galaxy slot revenues exploded 377% YoY but lost 11% MoM to $13MM
  • MGM slot revenues had the second best growth at 33% YoY to $15MM
  • SJM slot revenues grew 12% YoY to $17MM
  • MPEL slot revenues grew 3% YoY to $20MM
  • Wynn slot revenues grew 12% YoY to $20MM
  • LVS slot revenues grew 10% YoY to $31MM








In preparation for HST's Q3 earnings release tomorrow, we’ve put together the pertinent forward looking commentary from HST’s Q2 earnings call.



  • “The fundamentals of our business remain attractive. Transient demand has recovered to prior peak levels, and group demand continues to improve. As RevPAR is increasingly driven by improvements in average rate, margin growth and flow-through will accelerate. Additions to supply have been restrained and will likely remain well below historical levels for at least the next three years. Construction costs are beginning to increase again, which will further help limit new supply”
  • “We expected our operating results to be significant impacted by substantial renovations at our Sheraton New York and Philadelphia Marriot hotels in the second quarter. Excluding results from these hotels, our RevPAR increase for the quarter would have been 7.6%. In addition, it is worth noting that our comparable hotel results do not include the performance of the $1.7 billion of acquisitions we have completed over the last 12 months, which are performing exceptionally well and have generated an average RevPAR increase of over 18% for the quarter”
  • “Our business mix trends for the quarter were quite favorable as we saw strong demand increases from our higher rated customer segments and solid rate growth across the board. Rate growth in Q2, driven by exceptional growth in transient demand, was the best we had seen since 2007.”
  • “Group demand for the quarter was essentially flat with last year as increases in corporate and association business were essentially offset by reductions in discount groups. The growth in these higher priced segments was even more pronounced in our luxury hotels.”
  • Repositioning: “We expect to spend $220 million to $240 million on these types of projects”
  • “We expect to spend approximately $320 million to $345 million on maintenance capital expenditures.”
  • “We are expecting improved performance in the second half of the year due to less disruption from renovation at our hotels, an improving macroeconomic outlook relative to the first half of the year and solid group bookings for the third and fourth quarters”
  • We will continue to be aggressive, but disciplined, as we evaluate new investments to further enhance the value of our company.”
  • “We’ve seen a big increase in tour groups throughout Europe this year. I think that a better economy in the rest of the world has ultimately contributed to better results in Europe. So I think we may see that trend moderate a little bit for the second half of the year only as we start to move out of the tourist season. But the bottom line is so far … Europe seems to be holding up relatively well”
  • “I think as we also feel that as we look at the group booking pace as it carries into the second half of the year, it does seem to be a little bit stronger, the rate does seems to be growing. So that gives us a fair amount of confidence that things should be a little bit better.”
  • Guidance FY11:
    • Comparable hotel RevPAR: +6% to 7.5%
    • Adjusted operating profit margins: +90 to 120bps
    • Adjusted EBITDA of $1.020 to $1.050BN
    • FFO per diluted share of $0.87 to $0.91 which has been reduced by $0.03 per share for acquisitions, debt repayment and impairment costs
    • “We expect the RevPAR increase to continue to be driven more by rate growth than occupancy, which should lead to strong rooms flow-through, even with growth in wage and benefit costs above inflation”
    • “We expect some increase in group demand as well as higher quality groups, which  should help to drive growth in banquet and audio-visual revenues and solid F&B flow through”
    • “We expect unallocated costs to increase more than inflation, particularly for utilities where we expect higher growth due to an increase in both rates and volume, and sales and marketing cost, where higher revenues will increase cost. We also expect property taxes to rise in excess of inflation and property insurance to increase well in excess of inflation due to an increase in insurable values and premium increases in the second half of the year”
    • Regional guidance for 3Q11:
      • San Fran: “continue to outperform our portfolio in the third quarter due to excellent group and transient demand and further ADR increases.”
      • Hawaii: “Slightly underperform the portfolio in the third quarter due to some disruption from renovation activity.”
      • “Tampa hotels to perform very well in the third quarter due to strong group bookings”
      • “We expect our Miami and Fort Lauderdale hotels to have a great third quarter and to outperform the portfolio because of strong group demand which should drive a significant increase in ADR.”
      • “We expect the Phoenix market to significantly outperform our portfolio in the third quarter due to strong group demand and growth in both group and transient rates, particularly at the Westin Kierland which will benefit from the new ballroom.”
      • “We expect our San Diego hotels to underperform the portfolio due to lower levels of group business which will result in weak transient pricing through the summer months”
      • “We expect the Chicago market to perform very well in the third quarter.”
      • “We expect RevPAR for our New York hotels to improve significantly for the rest of the year.”
      • “We expect the D.C. market to continue to underperform the portfolio in the third quarter; however, our urban hotels will continue to significantly outperform the suburban hotels.”
      • “Our Boston hotels are expected to continue to underperform the portfolio in the third quarter due to lower levels of group demand.”
      • “We expect the Philadelphia market to outperform the portfolio in the third quarter as the renovation wraps up and group demand increases”

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Shorting the Aussie Dollar

Conclusion: Though we’ve seen a big move in recent months (AUD/USD -9.4% since peaking in late-July), we still think the Aussie dollar could go a lot lower vs. the U.S. dollar and, thus, we remain bearish on it over the intermediate-term TREND. 


Position: Short the Aussie Dollar (etf: FXA). Long the U.S. Dollar (etf: UUP).


Yesterday, we added a short position in Australia’s currency, the Aussie dollar (AUD), to our Virtual Portfolio.  This is not a new thesis for Hedgeye Macro clients, as we’ve been the bear in this market from a research perspective since 2Q and from a risk management perspective as early as July 27 (coincidentally the day the Aussie dollar hit an all-time closing price high vs. the USD), but it’s worth briefly rehashing the idea to those of you who may not be familiar.


The thesis behind our bearish view of Australia’s currency (particularly relative to the U.S. Dollar) is six-fold: 

  1. Slowing Growth is Australia’s domestic economy leading to dovish monetary policy;
  2. Slowing Growth globally – particularly in key export markets;
  3. Housing Headwinds in Australia’s domestic property market;
  4. Deflating the Inflation both across the commodity complex and in Australia’s domestic economy leading to declining terms of trade and incrementally dovish monetary policy;
  5. Winner’s Risk a.k.a. mean reversion; and
  6. Correlation Risk bred out of Interconnected Risk Compounding (the trailing 3yr positive correlations to the S&P 500 and CRB Index are r² = 0.90 and 0.82, respectively). 

Net-net, the confluence of these six factors should get the Reserve Bank of Australia to cut interest rates at some point over the intermediate-term TREND and reduce the Aussie dollar’s real yield advantage over the U.S. dollar. Admittedly, a lot of this is priced into various Aussie interest rate markets, but we see further room for decline in the currency market.


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 1


As we’ve mentioned prior, the Aussie dollar has a lot of potential for mean reversion – particularly if the institutional investment community continues to have liquidity headwinds. It’s worth noting that the AUD has appreciated +58.1% vs. the USD since the March ’09 SPX bottom – the second largest advance out of the 48 currencies and FX indices we track over this time period.


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 2


Regarding Australia’s domestic economy, Aussie economic data continues to come in largely sour on the margin. Manufacturing and Construction PMI’s are at 2009 [low] levels and the Services PMI has slowed in September as well. Business Confidence, which edged up in September, is likely to be contained absent further declines in the currency and an easing of corporate credit conditions – the latter of which we don’t see happening anytime soon (Aussie corporate credits spreads closed last week one basis point off of a 26-month high). We continue to think inflation – both at the consumer and producer level – will trend lower over the intermediate-term TREND and we’re seeing that in both the data and in market prices.


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 3


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 4


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 5


In Australia’s housing market, a benchmark rate cut(s) should be pushed through to mortgage rates and eventually help mortgage demand, which continues to make new all-time lows. This glaring lack of demand is causing Australian housing prices to deteriorate further, which should incrementally slow consumer spending growth in the coming months alongside rising joblessness (the unemployment rate has backed up +40bps since April). Some key metrics to consider regarding the headwinds facing Australia’s housing market over the long-term TAIL:

  • Nearly 2/3rds of Australian citizens own homes (population = 22.5 million);
  • Roughly 90% of encumbered households have variable-rate mortgages, which makes consumer finances incredibly sensitive to interest rate fluctuations;
  • At 155% of disposable incomes, Australian households are more +16.5% more levered than U.S. households were just prior to the financial crisis (133%);
  • Australia has the most unaffordable housing in the English speaking world, according to a January Demographia survey (6.1x gross annual household income vs. 3x in the U.S.); and
  • A recent Zillow.com survey confirms the Demographia survey results: the median house price in Australia ($503k in May) is nearly 3x that of the U.S. ($184k in June).  

Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 6


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 7


Our proprietary quantitative levels on the FXA etf and the CRB Index (raw materials account for 60% of Australia’s exports) are below:


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 8


Shorting the Aussie Dollar - 9


For more in-depth analysis behind this position, refer to the notes below (email us for copies). We’re also happy to follow up with a call for those looking for additional color: 

  • April 6, 2011: Aussie Dollar – Getting Long in the Tooth: We remain bearish on the Aussie dollar for the intermediate-term TREND and forsee a correction from its near all-time high (AUD/USD), primarily due to slowing economic growth down under in part aided by slowing growth in key export markets, which may lead to lower interest rates and more accommodative monetary policy.
  • May 19, 2011: Aussie Dollar – Dancing ‘til the Music Stops: We expect the Aussie dollar to correct over the intermediate term as consensus expectations for an RBA rate hike(s) over the next 3-6 months are irrational due to a pending slowdown in domestic growth. Additionally, our 2Q Macro Theme of Deflating the Inflation is incrementally negative for the AUD as the Inflation Trade unwinds.
  • July 27, 2011: We Wouldn’t Want to be Glenn Stevens Right About Now: RBA Governor Glenn Stevens could shock the Australian economy into a pronounced economic downturn by looking through the current slowdown and hiking rates within the next few months, but given recent economic data it seems more likely that the tightening cycle has peaked in Australia. 

Darius Dale



The California State Controller released the Statement of General Fund Cash Receipts and Disbursements for September 2011.


The monthly report issues yesterday by CA State Controller John Chiang covers the state’s cash balance, receipts and disbursements in September.  Revenues came in below projections from the recently passed state budget.  Chiang said that “September's revenues alone do not guarantee that triggers will be pulled. But as the largest revenue month before December, these numbers do not paint a hopeful picture.”


We focus on Retail Sales and Use Tax Receipts as one data point pertaining to the health of the consumer in the Golden State.  For the quarter ending September 30th, this figure dropped over 21% year-over-year.   Below, we chart this trend on a one- and two-year basis versus CAKE blended same-store sales.  The 3Q11 CAKE number (yellow bar) is a hypothetical comp arrived at by assuming that the two-year average trend in CAKE’s comparable sales trend holds flat.  We do not have access to enough data points to infer a meaningful correlation between these two metrics but certainly do not see the drop in retail sales tax receipts as bullish for the prospects of any restaurant/retail businesses with exposure to California.  20.7% of CAKE’s store base is in California.  BJRI and PFCB also have 50% and 14%, respectively, of their restaurants in California.





Howard Penney

Managing Director


Rory Green



JNY: Insight On A Jeanswear Deal


To the extent that this is not a firesale because business is tanking, it makes sense strategically. But the timing is suspect.



There are puts and takes on this proposed JNY Jeanswear sale to Israel’s Delta Galil Industries (DELT.IT). Netting it all out, I come out on the plus side – IF it actually happens.


Biggest positive:  It would provide a $4.50 slug of cash to a company with a sub-$10 stock. And let’s face some facts, with brands like l.e.i, energie, Gloria, and Jessica Simpson selling squarely in mid and lower tier channels in a stagflationary environment, it’s not the most defendable business out there.  In fact, much of this content exists not because it should, but because years of deflationary sourcing costs and lower interest rates allowed JNY to roll up a portfolio of average content, and then keep it afloat while milking for cash.


The new reality removes the opacity of this model, and management knows this. If they can relieve the balance sheet pressure, get rid of the low end of the portfolio, and simply rid themselves of a distraction while they focus on real content – like Jones New York and Weitzman – then I’m ok with this.

  1. On the negative side, the company came out and said that it would use proceeds to repo stock. That’s great…really, it is. But they have over $7 per share in debt, deferred payments remaining  for its Stuart Weitzman acquisition and a sub-$10 stock. Maybe they have such huge confidence in their business such that a sub-$10 stock is ridiculous to them. That’d be super bullish, and I definitely won’t ignore that. But in this market, I’d like JNY to finally put on its conservatism pants and get rid of debt.
  2. The price seems out of whack. Either; a) the multiple is either really low, b) the business is really bad, or c) the business being discussed is actually a subset of what we otherwise currently classify as JNY Jeanswear. Wholesale Jeanswear generated about $820mm in revs last year at a respectable 9.3% EBIT margin. On those numbers, the range discussed amounts to 4.0-4.5x EBITDA. Granted, those margins are what I’d consider a peak. Haircut them by 25% to what’s realistic for this year, and it suggests 5.0-5.8x EBITDA on the disposal.  This compares to JNY’s current multiple of around 4.8x EBITDA.
  3. Of course, the bigger curve ball would be that JNY is missing the quarter meaningfully, making the multiple higher than it seems. That would also synch with timing of this leak. I wouldn’t put this past them to divert investors’ attention away from the quarter in favor of a capital markets event.

Lastly, be careful on this one. LIZ looked like a great idea at $10, and not a whole lot changed while it dropped to $4 – certainly not enough to explain away a 60% loss in equity value. Yes, JNY looks cheap. But it could be a value trap waiting to happen. I think LIZ offers up a better portfolio, more upside, and far stronger downside support.



JNY Segment Results & 2011 Outlook:

JNY: Insight On A Jeanswear Deal - JNY Segs 10 11


JNY: Insight On A Jeanswear Deal - JNY Guid 10 11


JNY: Insight On A Jeanswear Deal - JNY 10 11


Brian McGough

Managing Director



Hedgeye Statistics

The total percentage of successful long and short trading signals since the inception of Real-Time Alerts in August of 2008.

  • LONG SIGNALS 80.48%
  • SHORT SIGNALS 78.35%