MACAU'S gambling revenue jumped 13.5 percent to a record US$38 billion in 2012, official figures showed yesterday, despite the pace of growth in the world's largest gaming hub slowing from 2011.
Gaming revenue rose to 304.14 billion patacas from 267.87 billion patacas in 2011, according to statistics posted on the official Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau website.
But the pace of growth slowed from 2011, when revenues surged 42 percent year-on-year to US$33.47 billion, as China's economy slowed and affected the mainland Chinese high-rollers who flock to the gaming tables in Macau.
Despite that, analysts said Macau's better-than-expected December gaming revenue - which rose 19.6 percent year-on-year to 28.24 billion patacas - suggested a rebound was in sight.
This compared to a 3.2 percent year-on-year growth in October and 7.9 percent in November.
"The strong December represents a recovery in gaming revenue growth," said Aaron Fischer, head of consumer and gaming research at brokerage CLSA.
Fischer said the brokerage had forecast revenue would continue to grow at a moderate 9 percent in 2013.
"However, with initial signs of macro-economic recovery in China, infrastructure improvements and a more stable political environment, our current gaming revenue estimate might appear to be on the conservative side."