Locals Las Vegas gaming revenues declined 6% YoY in December. This is the second straight sequential improvement following a 25% YoY decline in October. North Las Vegas was the standout, driven by the opening of Station Casinos’ Aliante. Excluding North Las Vegas, the remainder of the locals market still declined only 9%. December 2008 was held back by 1 fewer Saturday.

The locals Las Vegas market could be an interesting one for a variety of reasons. This was the growth market in the country for years until housing crashed 2007, and now is one of worst markets.

• Las Vegas housing prices fell earlier and harder than most of the country which could drive an earlier turn around. Moreover, the Vegas housing market is among the Nation’s most efficient, since regulatory hurdles (permitting, environmental, etc.) are limited. Prices correct faster.
• Largest operator likely to go into bankruptcy – Station Casinos is already attempting to restructure through a pre-packaged bankruptcy. Capital and promotional spending in the market is likely to be constrained for quite some time.
• Population still growing – Here is one of the major differentiators. Unlike most gaming markets, a desired climate, no state income tax, and a low cost of living are still driving population growth.
• Huge retiree population – Las Vegas has a larger retiree population than any other gaming market. Retirees have more time and money to spend on gambling. A rising interest environment directly boosts gaming revenues as well.

The near term will still be challenging but I think 2010 will be a growth year as outlined in our 2/5/09 post “THE LAS VEGAS LOCALS MODEL”. If interest rates rise, it could be a very good year.

Sequential pick up in revenues

Neurofinance: The Psychology Behind When To Sell A Bull Market

"Most momentum investors stay invested too long, under-reacting and holding tight after truly bad news finally arrives to break the trend," writes MarketPsych's Richard Peterson.

read more

Energy Stocks: Time to Buy the Dip? | $XLE

What the heck is happening in the Energy sector (XLE)? Energy stocks have trailed the S&P 500 by a whopping 15% in 2017. Before you buy the dip, here's what you need to know.

read more

Cartoon of the Day: Hard-Headed Bears

How's this for "hard data"? So far, 107 of 497 S&P 500 companies have reported aggregate sales and earnings growth of 4.4% and 13.2% respectively.

read more

Premium insight

McCullough [Uncensored]: When People Say ‘Everyone is Bullish, That’s Bulls@#t’

“You wonder why the performance of the hedge fund indices is so horrendous,” says Hedgeye CEO Keith McCullough, “they’re all doing the same thing, after the market moves. You shouldn’t be paid for that.”

read more

SECTOR SPOTLIGHT Replay | Healthcare Analyst Tom Tobin Today at 2:30PM ET

Tune in to this edition of Sector Spotlight with Healthcare analyst Tom Tobin and Healthcare Policy analyst Emily Evans.

read more

Ouchy!! Wall Street Consensus Hit By Epic Short Squeeze

In the latest example of what not to do with your portfolio, we have Wall Street consensus positioning...

read more

Cartoon of the Day: Bulls Leading the People

Investors rejoiced as centrist Emmanuel Macron edged out far-right Marine Le Pen in France's election day voting. European equities were up as much as 4.7% on the news.

read more

McCullough: ‘This Crazy Stat Drives Stock Market Bears Nuts’

If you’re short the stock market today, and your boss asks why is the Nasdaq at an all-time high, here’s the only honest answer: So far, Nasdaq company earnings are up 46% year-over-year.

read more

Who's Right? The Stock Market or the Bond Market?

"As I see it, bonds look like they have further to fall, while stocks look tenuous at these levels," writes Peter Atwater, founder of Financial Insyghts.

read more

Poll of the Day: If You Could Have Lunch with One Fed Chair...

What do you think? Cast your vote. Let us know.

read more

Are Millennials Actually Lazy, Narcissists? An Interview with Neil Howe (Part 2)

An interview with Neil Howe on why Boomers and Xers get it all wrong.

read more

6 Charts: The French Election, Nasdaq All-Time Highs & An Earnings Scorecard

We've been telling investors for some time that global growth is picking up, get long stocks.

read more