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MGM Resorts Hopes to Raise $595M

LAS VEGAS -- Casino company MGM Resorts International hopes to raise as much as $595 million by pricing 47 million new shares at $12.65 each.

The Las Vegas-based company said Wednesday that its largest investor, billionaire Kirk Kerkorian, plans to sell as many as 32 million shares at the same price. That sale would lower the holding of Kerkorian's investment firm, Tracinda Corp., from its current 37 percent stake and could raise $404.2 million for Tracinda.

MGM Resorts' offering would increase the number of outstanding shares as much as 10.8 percent. The price is 24 cents per share above Wednesday's opening stock price of $12.41.

Shares of MGM Resorts were trading at $12.34 midday Wednesday; that's $1.27, or 9.4 percent, below Tuesday's close.

 (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

MGM Resorts Stock Up as MGM China Seeks IPO

LAS VEGAS  -- MGM Resorts International is planning an initial public offering of its joint venture in China on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

The Las Vegas-based casino company revealed its intentions in a regulatory filing Monday but did not give possible timing or terms. The possible IPO of MGM China Holdings Ltd., MGM Resorts' joint venture with Pansy Ho, would be the latest spinoff of a casino operator's Macau assets. Both Wynn Resorts Ltd. and Las Vegas Sands Corp. previously listed their Macau operations in Hong Kong.

Shares of MGM Resorts rose 58 cents, or 5.4 percent, to $11.25 on Monday. Over the last year, the stock has traded in a range of $8.54 to $16.66.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Nevada Casino Winnings Continue Slide in July

CARSON CITY, Nev.  -- Regulators say monthly casino winnings in Nevada continued to slide in July, dropping 4.9 percent.

The state Gaming Control Board reported Friday that casinos won almost $830 million in the first month of the new fiscal year, down from almost $873 million in July 2009.

Tax collections based on those winnings totaled almost $50 million. That was up from $43 million in June, but down a whopping 13 percent compared with the same period in 2009.

Casino revenues are a key economic indicator in Nevada, which which leads the nation in unemployment, foreclosures and bankruptcy rates.

Casinos throughout the state reported decreases in the amount they took in after gamblers' wagers and winnings. Las Vegas Strip casino winnings were flat, but represented more than half of the state total.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Room Rates Climb in Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS - You can see a turnaround on the Strip, from crowded sidewalks to dense traffic.

"It definitely has changed," said visitor Sherri Moncrieffe. "Nice shiny buildings, Louis Vuitton, Tom Ford, Tiffany & Co." More Las Vegas visitors are taking in the sights and sounds of the Strip compared with a year ago. "The scenery has improved, and the lifestyle is always crazy," said tourist Steve McCabe.

Visitor volume rose in June by almost 127,000 from last year. For months, recession-ravaged Las Vegas properties offered bargains to tourists who otherwise might be tightening their belts.

"We went with Expedia and got our room rate at the Excalibur for like $29 a night, so that's very good," said tourist Becky McCabe.

"It seems like there are more specials," said visitor Dan Grzywacz. "Rooms are cheaper, two-for-one specials, dinner specials."

NV Casino Winnings Down 4.3 Percent in Fiscal Year

CARSON CITY, Nev.  -- Regulators say monthly casino winnings in Nevada were down more than 6.6 percent in June, pushing the overall decrease for the fiscal year to 4.3 percent.

The state Gaming Control Board reported Thursday that state tax collections based on casino winnings in June totaled almost $43 million, down 5.9 percent compared with the same period in 2009.

Casino revenues are a key economic indicator in the Silver State, which continues to struggle with record high unemployment and home foreclosures.

The report says that for the July 2009 to June 2010 fiscal year, casinos won $10.3 billion. That's down from almost $10.8 billion the previous year. The report says casinos statewide won almost $764 million in June. On the Las Vegas Strip, casino winnings were down more than 7.6 percent.

 (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Harrah's Entertainment Loses $274M in 2nd Quarter

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Casino operator Harrah's Entertainment Inc. says it lost $274 million during the second quarter as customers gambled less.

The loss reported Wednesday by the private Las Vegas-based company compared with profits of just under $2.3 billion during second quarter last year. That quarter included almost $4.3 billion in gains for paying debt early at less than face value.

The company's revenue slipped 2.2 percent, to about $2.2 billion, compared with almost $2.3 billion during April-June 2009.

Harrah's CEO Gary Loveman says the company increased marketing and labor costs because it anticipates more demand at its more than 50 properties.

Loveman says the company increased cash to about $3 billion and reduced debt. But the company didn't report how much debt it has now.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Wynn Resorts Earns $52.4M During Second Quarter

LAS VEGAS -- Casino operator Wynn Resorts Ltd. says its second quarter profit doubled to $52.4 million with help from its new resort in the Chinese gambling enclave of Macau.

Wynn Resorts said Thursday it earned 42 cents per share during the quarter that ended June 30. That's compared with $25.5 million, or 21 cents per share, a year earlier.

The Las Vegas-based company's revenue rose to $1 billion for the quarter from $723.3 million a year earlier, as revenue in Macau climbed 74.1 percent with April's opening of Encore at Wynn Macau, adding hotel rooms and casino space.

The results beat expectations of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters for earnings of 41 cents per share on revenue of $992 million.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)