Analysts applauded the move but it did not appear to help thecompany's share price, which ended Wednesday at $31.32, down 13.27%on the day, and was off by another 13% in afternoon trading onThursday, taking its share price to $27.23. Part of the concern isbelieved to be the company's ongoing need to refinance amulti-billion dollar loan that is coming due and find billions moreto complete multiple projects in Macau.

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Shares of Las Vegas Sands have fallen 77% from late September2007, when the company's share price stood at approximately $120.The company is not alone. MGM Mirage, Boyd Gaming and PinnacleEntertainment have all seen their share prices fall approximately70% over the past year and several others – Wynn Resorts, PennNational Gaming, Ameristar Casinos -- have seen their share pricesfall by approximately 50%.

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A gaming index that includes all those companies has fallen 44%since hitting a high of 667.09 in October 2007. The index waslaunched in 1998 with a value of 100. Including a 10% drop thispast month, the Applied Analysis gaming Index now stands at 371.91and is expected to head even lower in October.

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"The latest pull-back in the financial markets has manyinstitutions conserving cash, impacting an already-tight capitalmarket," Applied Analysis principal Brian Gordon says. "Wall Streetremains concerned about gaming operators' ability to weather thestorm and comply with debt covenants going forward. Concernsregarding pricing of future borrowings in this capital-intensiveindustry have investors moving toward the sidelines. Elevatedinterest charges for highly-leveraged operators, particularly thosethat financed privatizations, could be problematic."

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Adelson's loan was in the form of preferred stock that will pay6.5% interest over five years. In a similar move, fellow gamingexecutive Steve Wynn last month paid $4 million in fees in order tomaintain its interest rates and had loan covenants altered to helpWynn Resorts maintain its debt-to-cash-flow ratio while also beingable to borrow additional money to complete Encore at Wynn LasVegas, according to SEC filings and published reports.

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Next up is MGM Mirage, which is trying to raise an additional$500 million so it can complete a $3-billion bank financing for itsfive-tower, 19 million-sf Citycenter project that is underconstruction and scheduled to open all at once in late 2009. InAugust, company executives told analysts that the project hadreceived commitments for a little more than half of that total fromthe lead banks -- Bank of America, Royal Bank of Scotland, UBS, BNPParibas, and Sumitomo Mitsui -- and additional, smaller commitmentsfrom Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, and the Bank of NovaScotia.

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Robert Baldwin, MGM Mirage chief design and constructionofficer, told analysts that once the full financing is in place theJV will have spent approximately $4.2 billion of the estimated $9.1billion of gross cash construction and preopening costs, leavingapproximately $5 billion needed to complete construction. Minus the$3 billion in bank financing, that leaves an additional $2 billionin costs that will be split evenly between MGM Mirage and its 50-50partner, Dubai World. In order to complete obtain the remainder ofthe $3 billion financing commitment, MGM Mirage and Dubai World mayhave to put in more than $2 billion.

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The actual gross cost of Citycenter is $11.2 billion. In itsfirst quarter report, MGM Mirage pegged the net project budget at$8.5 million–after an expected $2.7 billion in residential sales.The gross project budget includes $9.2 billion for constructioncosts (including capitalized interest), $1.7 billion for the land,$200 million for pre-opening expenses and $100 million of"intangible assets." As of August, Baldwin said 54% or 1,421 of the2,700 condominiums have been sold for $1.75 billion.

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Boyd Gaming solved the construction financing issues for its$4.8-billion Echelon development by halting the 87-acre project afull year into construction. The move, announced two months ago,marked the first time in decades that a project on the Las VegasStrip had been shut down after breaking ground.

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The developer of the M Resort, Spa & Casino in Henderson,NV, solved its financing problems before financing became aproblem, leaving the $700-million project fully funded and on trackfor its early 2009 debut. Anthony Marnell III, the developer, toldGlobeSt.com in August, shortly after the topping-out ceremony, thatall necessary financing and fixed-price construction contracts havebeen in place since the start of construction.

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MGM is a partner in M Resort by way of a $160-millionsubordinated convertible note it provided in April 2007. MGM Miragehas the right to convert the note into a 50% equity interest in theM Resort after 18 months of the note's issuance if not previouslyrepaid. Marnell told GlobeSt.com that MGM will indeed be a 50-50partner in the project by the time November rolls around.

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Located at Las Vegas Boulevard and St. Rose Parkway, severalmiles south of the Strip, the 11-story M Resort will have 390 roomsand suites; 90,000 sf of gaming space; 40,000 sf of meeting andconference facilities; a 20,000-sf spa; a 2.3-acre pool and eventsarea; a wine cellar and tasting room; a top-floor lounge and ninerestaurants. The structures, including a 2,000-slip parking garage,cover about 12 of 95 contiguous acres controlled by MarnellIII.

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The entire property is entitled for 6,000 hotel, condo andcondo-hotel units and upwards of 1 million sf of retail. Theretail, a big chunk of which would be built atop the parkingstructure, is much further along than any additional hotel orcondominium units. A 14-screen, 63,000-sf upscale movie theater isslated open by the end of 2009 atop the parking garage, and MarnellIII and Taubman have signed a letter of intent to jointly develop a1.3 million-sf, department store-anchored high-end shopping mallthat would open in late 2011 or early 2012.

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In a conference call with analysts in August, Taubman CEO RobertTaubman spoke highly of the retail opportunity at M Resort butcautioned that the M Resort shopping mall is at this point only "agood story" and that the company needs to have a lot of goodstories. "Unfortunately, we are not going to be able to build themall," he says. "Some of them will fall by the wayside."

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To let potential customers know the project is nearingcompletion regardless of what happens with the Taubman plan,Marnell has contracted with the Lightship Group to bring a flyingbillboard to the Las Vegas sky beginning this month. The"electronic lightship" is essentially a blimp with a 2,100-sflighted electronic screen that can broadcast a multitude of mediafrom live television and streaming video, to web sites and staticimages.

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