Embracing Uncertainty: SP500 Levels, Refreshed

POSITIONS: Long Healthcare (XLV); Short Industrials (XLI) and Basic Materials (XLB)


Tomorrow is an important day in reporting monthly U.S. economic statistics, the U.S. Labor Report is released.  Keith is on the road, but we were discussing the potential stock market reaction to the labor report and, in short, we actually have no idea how the market is going to react.  This is probably not the best answer for a group of people that get paid to tell you what direction the market and stocks are going to go, but sometimes the beauty of using a system based on chaos theory is that you just have to embrace uncertainty.


As it relates to the U.S. Labor Report tomorrow, I would highlight a couple of points: 

  1. Our Financials Team noted this morning that initial claims over the past few weeks have been coming in even worse than they would have suspected, even as last week’s claim, as reported this morning, fell 23K to 365K.                                                                                                                                                                                                       
  2. Last month the U.S. added 120,000 jobs and consensus estimates are looking for 160,000 jobs additions for April, so an acceleration.  Thus, a number tomorrow below 160,000 will be a disappointment.  

Interestingly, the recent Challenger job report released yesterday appeared to support our view that the job market may decelerate.  Specifically, planned job cuts increased by 7.1% from March to April and 11.2% on year-over-year basis.


Even as we embrace the uncertainty of the job report tomorrow, we’ll stick with our range in U.S. equities to adjust exposure and manage risk.  As outlined in the chart below, our TRADE resistance level is 1,415, TRADE support is 1,393, and TREND support is 1,359.  A close at, or near, the TRADE resistance line suggests that disappointing news tomorrow is not baked into market prices.


What the market will actually do tomorrow on this news, though, is not clear, but as Bob Dylan said:


“Chaos is a friend of mine.”


We agree.


Daryl G. Jones

Director of Research


Embracing Uncertainty: SP500 Levels, Refreshed - SPX



In an effort to evaluate performance and as a follow up to our YouTube, we compare how the quarter measured up to previous management commentary and guidance.

OVERALL:  WORSE - While RevPAR was better than MGM's guidance, EBITDA missed the mark due to higher expense growth.  We would normally give companies credit for hold issues, however, since hold was actually 1% higher than last year across their portfolio YoY, it's a bit of a tough argument to make.  MGM China hold was also high and contributed more than $25m to the property.

    • BETTER: Despite the tough comp RevPAR for 1Q came in at 4% better than the 2-3% guidance.  However, most analysts had higher RevPAR in their estimates.
    • SLIGHTLY WORSE:  MGM now expects 2Q RevPAR to be up "mid-single digits" with a "strong forecast for the year." On the last call they said that "second quarter looks particularly strong and we think our RevPAR is going to grow nicely throughout the year" with mid to high single digit RevPAR growth achievable.  We don't think that investors were hoping for mid-single digit growth. MGM did qualify their guidance in that they think that if close-in bookings come in better than expected that they can exceed their guidance.
    • SAME:  Convention room nights on the books will be same as 2011, however, since the some of the MGM Grand rooms are out of service, convention mix should be slightly better than 2011
    • SAME:  MGM is optimistic about the higher level of group bookings YoY, the opening of Zharkana in 4Q,and modifications to Crystals which should provide easier pedestrian access to Aria
    • SAME:  Unclear if there is an impact from SCC but it's really too early to tell. If there any impact " it’s around the 3% to 5% in traffic, but is not necessarily showing up in play."
    • SAME:  They are still excited to be pursing potential development sites in the western part of the state
    • SAME:  Corporate expense ex stock comp came in at $37MM, just a tad above the moderate increase to "mid $30 millionish" that was guided to
    • LITTLE BETTER:  Stock comp was $9.3MM vs. guidance of $10MM
  • D&A
    • SAME:  D&A was $237MM vs. guidance of $235 million to $240 million
    • SAME:  Interest expense was $284MM vs. guidance of $285MM


A surprising disappointment from a hotel company



“We look forward to continued progress in 2012 given the dedication of our people, the ongoing cyclical recovery in lodging evidenced by strong occupancy levels, limited new supply growth in the U.S., and increasing preference for our brands among developers, hotel owners, and guests. In addition, we are excited about our recently announced organizational re-alignment intended to enhance our effectiveness and support our growth in this decade and beyond.” - Mark S. Hoplamazian, president and chief executive officer of Hyatt Hotels Corporation




  • 2012 off to a good start
  • Look forward to further rate growth in 2012
  • Leisure & Business segments have been strong in Latin America
  • Will look to recycle the purchased Mexico City hotel in the future
  • Industry dynamics relatively good: US supply low; global travel continues to grow; China/India markets are robust


  • 1Q SG&A-broadly in-line with internal expectations
    • 1/3 cost allocation: 1x brand launch expenses, legal fees on a hotel
    • 1/3 cost allocation: global recruitment expansion 
    • 1/3 cost allocation: base-line costs
  • SG&A Guidance: Low teens growth for the rest of the year, excludes the 1x items
  • Mexico City hotel deal
    • wanted to establish presence in new gateway city
    • post-renovation will have 734 rooms
    • will close transaction in May
    • EBITDA $8-10MM for the remainder of the year
    • travel patterns from US to Mexico has been strong - both leisure and business
    • re-branding will have a significant impact
    • $40MM renovation investment will help Group business
    • will retain mgmt contract upon any sale
  • Sees select-service opportunities in Latin America
  • Europe: continues to look for opportunities
  • Group business: mainly driven by rate growth; in the quarter bookings were up 30%
  • Many bookings were booked within 90 days
  • Group business:
    • Strong segments: Consulting, technology, IT 
    • Weak segments: financials, farm land business
    • Too early for 2013 Group trends
  • Andaz: traction has been good; about 6 in the pipeline (mostly international); 
  • Lodgeworks: tracking ahead of $40MM EBITDA goal; in 1Q, had $10MM EBITDA
  • Renovation projects: NYC/San Francisco hotels doing well
  • Rio: pre-opening development costs will continue 
  • Comparable margins: +190bps driven by the 5 big renovations; -60bps from a couple of other renovations and select service hotels
  • Cost per occupied room were lower in 1Q
  • Large hotels seeing double digits gains in group business-mostly due to associations
  • Financial segment was 'reasonable' both for transient and group demand
  • Hotel transaction market: hearing more of 'potential transactions' as opposed to transaction actually going through but saw a little more M&A recently. Do not see a fundamental shift. Debt markets are stable. Financing for some projects (i.e. those with great locations, key cities) have improved.
  • Park Hyatt NY: construction progress going well; look to complete in early 2014
  • Worker contracts in 2012-2014 - still in negotiations with labor unions; difficult to forecast
  • Non-Europeans in Europe customer base: 40%



  • 1Q Owned and Leased hotels:
    • RevPAR +8.3% (8.7% excluding FX impact)
    • "Excluding expenses related to benefit programs funded through Rabbi Trusts and non-comparable hotel expenses, expenses increased 6.0%.. primarily due to higher payroll and related expenses as a result of higher occupancy levels."
  • Management and Franchising RevPAR: 
    • NA Full service RevPAR: +8.1%
    • NA Select service RevPAR: +7.2%
    • International REVPAR up 5.7% (6.5% excluding FX impact)
  • “Over the last year, we increased both development resources and financial capital dedicated to expanding our presence. Results of these investments are becoming more visible, as our base of executed agreements for future hotels has increased by 15% during that time period."
  • Announced $190MM acquisition of 756-room hotel in the Polanco area of Mexico City, which upon closing, will be re-branded as Hyatt Regency Mexico City. Hyatt will invest $40MM in the renovation over the property over the next 3 years. 
  • "Group rooms revenue at comparable North American full service hotels increased approximately 9% in the first quarter of 2012... as a result of strong corporate demand offset by slightly lower association demand."
  • "Transient rooms revenue at comparable North American full service hotels also increased approximately 9% in the first quarter of 2012...driven by strength from corporate customers."
  • 6 hotels were added (4 in N.A. and 2 outside of N.A.)/ 1 was removed (outside N.A.)
    • Hyatt North Houston (franchised, 335 rooms)
    • Hyatt Place Raleigh West (franchised, 132 rooms)
    • Hyatt Place San Jose / Downtown (franchised, 234 rooms)
    • Hyatt Place New Orleans / Convention Center (franchised, 170 rooms)
    • Park Hyatt Ningbo Resort and Spa (managed, 214 rooms)
    • Park Hyatt Hyderabad (managed, 209 rooms)
  • March 31, 2012  pipeline: 170 hotels (>38,000 rooms).  Approximately 70% of the future expansion is expected to be located outside North America.
  • SG&A increased by 32.9%, excluding the impact of the Rabbi Trust impact SG&A increased by $17MM or 25.8%. "Approximately one-third of the $17 million increase relates to brand launch expenses, bad debts, and legal fees."
  • 1Q Capex: $95MM
    • Maintenance: $23MM
    • Enhancements to existing properties: $52MM
    • Investment in new properties: $20MM (mostly land)
  • Corporate finance: 
    • Debt: $1.2 BN ($1.4BN available RC)
    • Cash & cash equivalents: $540MM
    • Short-term investments: $510MM
  • 2012 Information:
    • Capex: $360MM 
      • "The increase in capital expenditures as compared to previously announced 2012 information relates to the recently announced construction of Hyatt Place Omaha Downtown/Old Market."
    • D&A: $350MM
    • Interest expense: $70-75MM
    • Expects to open over 20 hotels

Early Look

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Retail: Watch Inventories. We Are.


Keep an eye on inventories coming out of Q1. We’re seeing a directional bifurcation between components of the mid tier (TGT/KSS bad, GPS, BONT good). That alone is notable. But tack on the fact that the off-price channel is ripping (TJX, ROST), and this is not a bullish event.



April sales were light as reflected by the beat-to-miss ratio coming in at only 9 companies coming in better than expectations with 11 misses. As expected, companies pointed to the holiday shift, weather, and even a later Mother’s Day to explain away sales underperformance, which would be more acceptable if March sales had come in that much better, but they didn’t. We expected some surprises after March sales demand didn’t come in stronger, but admittedly the surprise was in fact the resilience in Q1 earnings expectations with the final month now in the books. This was the key callout of the morning with five companies taking expectations higher, or towards the higher end of prior ranges, implying stronger margins due to favorable inventory positioning despite some posting weaker top-line results.

Heading into Q2, we think inventory management will prove more critical than any quarter in perhaps the last 4-years due to competitive pricing environment disruptions. This in turn will drive a clear bifurcation between the companies that have inventories in check versus those that don’t.


Here are some additional callouts from this morning:

Off-Price/Discounter Outperformance: ROST and TJX continue to outperform the rest of retail coming in +7% vs. +3.5%E and +6% vs. +3.3%E respectively representing the biggest beats to the upside. These results mirror outperformance throughout Q1, which reflects a strong sequential acceleration in sales growth both on a 1yr and 2yr basis for both retailers. Both increased their respective earnings outlooks reflecting early bullishness.


ROST posted sales up +14% on a -3% decline in inventories in Q1 resulting in an 8pt sequential improvement in the sales/inventory spread to +16%. Moreover, the increase in Q1 EPS outlook ($0.92-$0.93 vs. $0.89-$0.91E) suggests the company avoided gross margin contraction as was expected in what is the toughest margin compare of the year. Very positive.

TJX traffic continues to be a key driver of comp with stronger earnings suggesting similar margin implications as highlighted at ROST given TJX’s recent sales/inventory position as seen in the chart below. While TJX does not disclose where inventories at quarter end, we suspect this metric improved given stronger sales growth and ROST’s results. Improvement in the European business appears on track as well.

It’s worth noting that the comp spread between the off-price and total comps expanded for the fourth consecutive month (see chart below).


Mid-Tier Weakness: Mid-tier sales came in light with TGT, KSS, GPS, M, and BONT all missing comp expectations – SSI was the only one to come in ahead of expectations posting a less bad -1% decline vs. -4%E.


As noted, while this does not come as a surprise given the disjointed nature of the current department stores  environment, inventory positioning was critical in Q1 and will be again in Q2. GPS and KSS were good in this regard leading to GPS guiding EPS higher while enabling KSS to maintain expectations despite missing top-line expectations.


BONT sales were dismal coming in 2pts below expectations for the quarter reflecting a sequential deceleration in sales against substantially easier comparisons suggesting a turn in the business is still not likely near-term.


At GPS, with earnings higher on lighter sales, relative margin strength supports the prospect for $2+ in earnings this year that’s needed to drive the stock higher from current levels. More importantly, with inventories in check, earnings will
be less reliant on sales performance over the near-term.


High/Low-End Bifurcation: The High/Low comp spread expanded in April and Mar/Apr levels remained consistent with Feb +6pts wide.  JWN (+7.1% vs. +6.3%E) and Neimans +4.3% posted good numbers, while M (+1.2% vs. +2.0%E) and SKS (+2% vs. +5.6%E) came in light at the high-end, yet positive. On the low end, KSS (-3.5% vs. -1.2%E) and BONT (-5% vs. +0.3%E) missed handidly with SSI (-1% vs. -4.3%E) coming in less bad.


Inventories: GPS, TGT, and ROST were the retailers to callout favorable inventory positioning in April. Not surprisingly, two of the three increased guidance.


COST: Uncharacteristically missed expectations for the second consecutive month (+4% vs. +5.5%E). Gas had no impact on comps while Fx impacted total comps by -100bps. Categories performed equally well with all up +MSD with the exception of Majors down slightly due to weakness in electronics.


Outlook Updates:


ROST: ($0.92-$0.93 vs. $0.89-$0.91E)

TJX: (Q1: $0.54 vs. $0.51-$0.52E & FY: a penny higher on both ends of the range to $2.26-$2.36)

KSS: Maintaining $0.60 in EPS despite lighter sales

GPS: $0.44-$0.46 vs. $0.40E

LTD: $0.38-$0.40 vs. $0.35-$0.40 prior

HOTT: $0.07-$0.08 vs. $0.02-$0.05 prior; Q2 ($0.06)-($0.04) vs. ($0.03E)

ARO: $0.12-$0.13 vs. $0.08-$0.10 prior

AEO: Full-year $1.06-$1.12 vs. $1.08E


Retail: Watch Inventories. We Are. - mid tier off price SIGMA


Retail: Watch Inventories. We Are. - high low spread


Retail: Watch Inventories. We Are. - TGT monthly sales grid


Casey Flavin



Adidas (ADDYY): 1Q12 Report Card

Conclusion:  Grade = B+  Adidas’ +14% currency neutral global growth in Q1 as well as the company’s increase to both top and bottom line full year guidance continues to demonstrate strong global demand for innovative Athletic Footwear, Apparel & Accessories.  



What Drove the Beat?

Adidas’ Q1 outperformance came primarily through upside in top line expectations +17% driven by double digit growth across all business segments with North America & Asia the biggest contributors to the top line. Although Gross margins were down 70 bps in Q1, higher sourcing costs had a (-470bps) impact on the bottom line (directionally, like Nike) but was mostly offset by increased retail penetration & a more favorable product/regional sales mix. All in, Operating margins expanded +113bps as Adidas leveraged opex for the 5th consecutive quarter reaching a trailing 12 month ~8% margin relative to the “Route 2015” goal of 11%. The only real sore spot remains Reebok.



Deltas in Forward Looking Commentary?


Adidas gives no quarterly guidance. Here is a table given at the end of last fiscal year, as well as changes that it’s already made to the outlook.


Adidas (ADDYY): 1Q12 Report Card - ADI outlook



Highlights from the Call:



Revenues: +17% (+14% currency neutral)

5th consecutive quarter of double digit top line growth

  • Wholesale: +10% cc Driven by all regions except North America; Other Asia+29%, China +27%
  • Same Store Sales: +9% cc, North America +17%, Latin America +14%
  • Other: +32% cc



Geographic Callouts:


Greater China: +26% currency neutral

No Doubt Adidas is gaining share in the market

  • Disciplined business rebuild since 2009
  • Maintained sharp focus on distribution quality &  store optimization
  • Refined product offering, brand marketing & merchandising to cater to a more mature/sophisticated Chinese consumer
  • Feedback from partners indicate Adidas has the greatest momentum, traffic remains high


Western Europe: +7%

Continue to secure and build on strong market share gains

  • Focusing on consumer analytics and channel right product placement
  • Examples: UK & Poland +19% & 35% respectively (sporting events this summer)


North America:

Adidas: +10% currency neutral

  • Footwear market share now at DD, sales +22% in Q1

TaylorMade-Adidas golf: +33% currency neutral

Reebok (ex licenses/Toning): +5% currency neutral



Brand & Category Callouts:


Adidas: +16% currency neutral

8th consecutive quarter of DD top line growth with DD growth in all regions

  • Football: +23% in Q1
  • Current strength still ahead of Summer events
  • Running: +16%
    • Clima franchise up over 80%
  • Basketball: +23%


Reebok: -7% currency neutral

Excluding NHL sales shift to CCM, the end of NFL license and ex toning, sales +10% cc

  • Continue to see good progress in Western Europe despite economic uncertainty
  • North America +5% ex tonight and profitability improving due to better price mix/product offering
  • Starting to see traction with global classic sales +7% cc
  • India- no additional color, taking the opportunity to improve underperforming area of the business
  • Estimating 1 time charges from idea to be a maximum of 70mm euro


TaylorMade-Adidas Golf: Sales +DD in all product categories

  • Apparel: +28%
  • Footwear: +64%
  • EBIT Doubled
  • Expecting Adam's golf deal to cost 53mm euro and close later this year



Margin Improvements:


Gross Margins: -74bps

  • Higher sourcing costs ate 4.7 points of margins alone
  •  offset much of sourcing impact through retail penetration, favorable product/regional sales mix


EBIT Margins: +113bps

  • Leveraged operating expenses for the 5th consecutive quarter down -160bps as % of sales 
  • Retail OM +110bps (marketing 11.1% of sales and should be similar to 2011 levels for the full year at 12.7%)



Retail Footprint at Quarter End:

2422 stores, +21 stores or 1% vs. LY

  • Opened 110 new stores, closed 89, 30 remodels



+13% cc (17% in Euro Terms)- believe to be best positioned in the industry



Net Debt 640mm euro at Quarter end

  • Down 274mm or 30% YoY

Equity Ratio +2.9 points to 48.1%


Guidance Increased (See attached Table):


Sales Growth to approach 10% (vs prior MSD-HSD)

  • Increased expectations in wholesale and other business


Continue to expect OM to approach 8% with net income growing 12%-17%


EPS projected to be 3.58-3.75 euro vs original guidance of 3.52-3.68






Market Share:

  • North America still a lot of potential, concentrating on building the business on a sustainable product platform will pillars in basketball, football, running and training
  • Same plan for Europe, though there are some economic challenged but growth should continue with championships coming down the pike



  • Do not publish the size of the business but India is not within the 3 biggest countries in Asia
  • Believe in 3 months on second quarter call there will be more details on India



  • Very successful in driving the style business primarily through originals


Reebok GM:

  • Has been helped by the shift from Hockey into CCM
  • Retail segment carrying in higher margin



  • Market leader in Japan
  • Strong business will continue into the next quarter and full year


Input costs:

  • Believe the costs have peaked in Q1


Reebok Marketing plans:

  • Launched the sport of fitness campaign a few weeks ago
  • Marketing concepts seem to be working
  • Compares are difficult over easy tones last year but the business is growing
  • Expecting new merchandise in the Spring of 2013


Royalty Income Growth:

  • Largely due to increase in Adidas products



  • Grew considerably up 60%
  • Do not publish figures for the e-commerce business



  • +10% ex license changes & toning, only accounting for NHL/NFL shift, down 5%


China Performance:

  • Much more sustainable and healthy business model
  • New IT systems that allow for quick response time
  • Inventory is cleaner and can be monitored closer
  • Will continue to see strong growth moving forward in China



  • Getting more leverage from operating expenses which is expected to continue throughout the year



  • Want to be in a position to service the consumer fast while managing working capital
  • Quality is inventory should be as clean as possible
  • No 1 offs in 1Q contributing to inventory position improvement


Retail NEO

  • Opened 8-10 stores in Germany with 2 to follow in the coming weeks
  • Early indications are quite exciting


Reebok US:

  • Difficult comparisons from easy tone in the first 6 months but business is headed in the right direction



  • Improving but no additional color given on the call


Latin America joint venture:

  • Business grew in Q1, working closely with joint venture partner
  • Have seen some hurdles with terrorists and import duties


Marketing Spend:

  • Will remain around 13%
  • Will not necessarily cross the boundary in event years



  • Don’t see toning as completely over
  • Feel they can rebuild the business 


Adidas (ADDYY): 1Q12 Report Card - ADDDY SIGMA



Miss a little deeper than just low hold




  • January and February were very strong months in LV.  March was very challenging - poor table hold coupled with a tough convention calendar comp.
  • Growth in RevPAR will be at least in the mid-single digits for the rest of the year with potential upside from in the year for the year bookings
  • They find the opportunities in Toronto very exciting.  They are also highly focused on Western MA.  Also looking in S. Korea, Taiwan, among other markets
  • YoY volume improvement in national and international table game play. $25MM of incremental EBITDA would have been generated at their wholly owned resorts and their share of Aria's EBITDA would have been $7MM higher had they held at the mid-point of their expected hold range
  • Convention mix was down slightly YoY.  Luxury resorts were able to fill in demand with in house bookings.  While lower end results had a harder time in-filling that demand
  • CityCenter facility was undrawn at March 31
  • Looking at redoing their MGM China facility as plans for MGM Cotai solidifies
  • The MGM Grand room remodel program continues to progress nicely with roughly 2,300 rooms completed and that project is on budget and on time to be completed by September of this year

  • 2Q12 ghuidance:
    • Stock comp:  $9-10MM
    • D&A:  $230-235MM
    • Interest expense:  $275-285MM ($6MM for MGM Chian and $23MM of Amoritization cost
  • City Center:
    • March occupancy at Aria was 92%
    • Record occupancy expected in 2Q at Aria
    • Convention booking are Robust for 2013 at Aria
    • Welcoming Zharkana to Aria and think that it will help revenues
    • 86% of Crytstals space is under lease
  • MGM China:
    • Continued efforts to better yeild their floor has been bearing fruit
    • Customer acceptance of Supreme and Platinum areas drove increases in their slot volume
    • Just opened a butterfly exhibit 
    • 40 gaming tables are going to come online when the 2nd floor renovations are complte
    • Believe that they will get government approval for their land grant imminently
  • Fundamentals of the business are getting stronger and that's good new for LV and MGM
  • Golden week in Macau is off to a great start
  • Opened their first hotel in China.  Expect their hospitality to grow
  • Seeing tangible benefits of capturing increased customers spend from M Life.  Very actively marketing in their regional properties to drive business to LV and their partnership with ASCA is helping
  • They are launching a social gaming site which will exclusively use MGM brands and will aim to recreate the Strip experience



  • Think's that Wynn's announcement bodes well for them.  They are confident that they have the product that the government wants built in Cotai
  • Las Vegas: the absence of ConExpo had a big impact on their numbers for one week in Macau, especially on their lower end properties. Think that RevPAR would have been 3% higher in the quarter if not from the difficult comp of that one week. 
  • The imminent release that they are looking for from the Macau gov't is the draft release of the gazette concession. Then they want to parallel getting all the necessary permits to start construction
  • Seeing big strength in tech, HC, and automotive segments. Expect convention mix to be similar YoY
  • At CC they are have a 70k increase in convention nights on the books YoY
  • First 2 months of the year, when mix was good, flow through was over 50%.  March impact was mainly the shift of Conexpo leaving. Think that the week's comp was an anomoly
  • Will look to do a $2-2.5BN financing package at MGM China to help finance MGM Cotai. Hope to get that financing done by YE
  • Convention calendar for the rest of the year looks solid - there are no more abberations. In 2Q the convention mix will be 1% better. Their 4Q calendar is the strongest
  • More occupancy and improved mix and pricing are driving some of the cost increases. They were up 0.4% on FTE's even though they had 66,000 more room nights YoY in the Q. 
  • Bellagio, Mirage and Mandalay - had the negative hold impact. Margins would have been up 40-50bps if hold was better. - What they didn't say was that increase is based off of an even worse hold comparison.
  • Tax benefit was $4MM (at City Center?) 
  • Margins should be about 25% at Aria going forward.  Last year they had their big CNY party at Aria and this year it was at Bellagio. Hold was primarily due to bacarrat
  • 7% increase in table game drop and a [3%] increase in baraccat at their wholly owned Strip properties
  • In Macau they are seeing the hold % move up to 3%
    • Of course they want you to use 3% to adjust downward. The properties average hold rate has been 2.91% since opening
  • Think that they can accomodate 1 or 2 more junket operators at MGM China
  • 1.8MM convention room nights 2007 (ex Treasure Island) and had 1.6MM (ex Aria) convention room nights in 2011. There is a lot more room inventory on the Strip since 2008 - especially on the high end, so its harder to just raise rates
  • 2012 forecast including Aria they expect to exceed 2007 convention room nights. Excluding Aria they would be about flat to 2011. However, they have some rooms out of service for renovations so the mix is up
  • When you look at the first quarter - the high end hotels have an easier time backfilling citywide events that were missing. Their "value" properties had a harder time. 
  • At Aria they had the same length of play as they had last year. Even their craps hold was poor - not just bacarrat
  • The Penninsula still generated 60% of teh GGR for Macau



  • "The positive trends we experienced throughout 2011 continued into the first quarter. However, our financial results were negatively impacted by our table games hold percentage.  Had we held at the midpoint of our normal range at our wholly owned resorts and at Aria our total Adjusted Property EBITDA would have increased by approximately $32 million"
    • We would point out that hold was actually 1% better than 1Q11 across their consolidated portfolio and really only 30bps below the low end of their "normal" range
    • Of course MGM makes no mention that MGM' China's higher than historical hold helped EBITDA by roughly $25-27MM.  MGM China's historical hold rate since opening has been 2.91% 
    • Consolidated Adj Property EBITDA of $321MM missed expectations, largely due to a miss at MGM's Strip 
      • "Total table games volume increased 5% compared to the prior year period."
        • "The overall table games hold percentage in the first quarter of 2012 was 18.7% compared to 17.7% for the first quarter of 2011, in each case below the low end of the Company's normal range of 19% to 23%."
      • "Slots revenue increased 7% compared to the prior year quarter."
    • Consolidated Las Vegas:
      • RevPAR: +4% and room revenues were up 3%
      • Adj Property EBITDA of $251MM missed our estimate and the Street's by 3% and 7%, respectively
      • Net revenues were in line with our numbers, but operating expenses were higher
    • MGM China reported net revenue of $702MM and  Adjusted EBITDA of $165MM which included $12MM of branding fees
      • "The increase was driven by year-over-year increases in volume measures for VIP table games, main floor table games, and slots of 6%, 13% and 27%, respectively. VIP table games hold percentage was 3.2% in the current year quarter and 2.9% in the prior year quarter"
    • CityCenter Adjusted Property EBITDA of "$32 million and was negatively affected by a significantly lower than normal current quarter table games hold percentage."
      • Net revenues declined to $234MM from $263MM in the prior year Q
      • "Table games hold percentage for the first quarter of 2012 was 16.0% compared to 27.4% for the prior year quarter.  The effect of the change in hold percentage compared to the prior year quarter to net revenue and Adjusted Property EBITDA was approximately $33 million and $26 million, respectively"
    • Financial Position notes:
      • Cash: $1.6BN (including $575MM at MGM China)
      • Debt: $13.4BN (including $552MM at MGM China)
        • $1.3BN under Sr Credit Facility (approx $360MM of which was not extended and matures 2/2014)
        • $820MM of T/L
      • In Feb MGM amended and extended $1.8BN of its Sr. Credit facility to Feb 2015.  The interest on the extended piece had a LIBOR floor of 1% and carried total interest of 6% at March 31rst which has subsequently dropped to 5%.  The non-extended piece of the R/C carries an interest rate of 7%
      • MGM China paid a $400MM dividend in March 2012, of which $204MM remained at MGM and $196MM was distributed to non-controlling interests
  • "The Company recognized a loss on retirement of debt of $59 million in the current year first quarter related to the amendment and restatement of the Company's senior credit facility and the repayment of non-extending term loans" 

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