Shares in James Packer's Crown Resorts are on a tear

The Macau Casino district. Chris McGrath/Getty Images

Shares in James Packer’s Crown Resorts surged higher after the casino company reported a 9.2% rise in revenue to $1.7 billion for the half year.

The statutory profit fell 47.2% to $201.8 million, partly due to a slump in gambling revenue in Macau.

However, normalised net profit rose 2.3% to $322 million (which smooths out swings in gambling winning rates), ahead of analyst expectations of $272.5 million.

Revenue in Crown, chaired by billionaire James Packer, increased by 9.2% to $1.7 billion.

CEO Rowen Craigie says the Australian business was satisfactory given a subdued level of consumer sentiment.

Normalised earnings were up 26.1% in Crown Melbourne and up 7.7% in Crown Perth.

Craigie says the already weak market conditions in Macau worsened over the six month period with a 30.4% decline in gross gaming revenue.

“The deterioration in the Macau market has continued into the second half,” he says.

Crown’s share price has been under pressure from a reported crackdown on corruption by Chinese authorities in Macau which has meant a sharp fall in the number of high rollers.

Crown declared an interim dividend on ordinary shares of 18 cents per share, franked to 50%.

Its shares were trading more than 7% higher today at $15.50.

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