Casino stocks crash as Macao considers crackdown on gambling

One of the world’s top gambling hubs may be staring at a dramatic overhaul — and investors are worried.

On Tuesday, Macao announced a 45-day public consultation that observers fear will lead to tighter regulations on the lucrative gambling industry in an extension of the recent crackdown on private business by Chinese authorities.

Stocks in US casino companies that operate in Macao — the only place where gambling is legal in China — crashed in response to the news. Sands China was down over 32% in Hong Kong, while Wynn Macau plunged over 28%, and MGM China fell more than 26%.

The government of the semi-autonomous Chinese territory was considering changes in nine areas, Macao’s economic and financial secretary Lei Wai Nong told reporters. Those areas include the number of gambling licenses issued and their duration, a stronger review mechanism for approving operators, and employee welfare.

The authorities also want to consider promoting “projects with non-gambling elements,” according to an official statement.

“[The Macao] government has decided to conduct a comprehensive review and improvement of the existing legal system on the basis of past regulatory experience, the current situation of the gaming industry and Macao’s economic development,” the statement said.

Investors have already been spooked by Beijing’s ongoing crackdown on sectors ranging from tech to gaming, which has wiped as much as $3 trillion off the market value of the country’s biggest companies.

Gambling is the lifeblood of Macao, which depends on millions of visitors from mainland China. But since last year, Covid-19 has threatened the business model at the heart of Macao’s economy.

— CNN’s Beijing bureau contributed to this article.

™ & © 2021 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

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Disneyland Figures Out a New to Make More Money

Disneyland Figures Out a New to Make More Money

AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

(CNN Business) – Millions of guests visit Disney theme parks each year, and most of them probably loathe waiting 90 minutes to ride “Peter Pan’s Flight.” So now Disney is rolling out a new service that will help park goers streamline their visits and cut down on wait times.

Genie” — which debuts this fall at California’s Disneyland and Florida’s Disney World — is a new digital service that will “maximize your park time, so you can have more fun,” according to the company.

“From specific attractions, foodie experiences and entertainment, to general interests like Disney princesses, villains, Pixar, Star Wars, thrill rides and more — just tell Disney Genie what you want to do and it will do the planning for you,” Disney (DIS) said in a blog post on Wednesday.

Disney Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro told CNN Business this week that the company listened to guests who want the theme park experience to be simpler, straightforward and tailored “for them.”

“You tell Genie what you are interested in specifically — whether that be an attraction, a food, a character — and Genie’s going to come back to you and tell you how to make the most of your day,” D’Amaro said.

The free service will be built into Disney Parks’ established apps along with a paid version called “Disney Genie+” that allows guests to access the “Lightning Lane” for $15 at Disney World and $20 at Disneyland.

“Lightning Lane” is basically a paid version of a benefit that used to be free for guests: Disney’s FastPass, which allowed visitors to book ride and attraction times in advance to avoid long waits.

As Disneyland retires the Fastpass and unveils their new pay-for Genie+ service to manage lines/crowds, Nikki Medoro and Bret Burkhart wonder if people will actually pay more to avoid lines. Also, Brett Favre says kids should avoid tackle football before age 14.