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Howard Stutz

Moody's upgrades Las Vegas Sands rating

27 June 2011

LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- Moody's Investors Service on Friday revised Las Vegas Sands Corp's rating outlook to positive from stable and affirmed its Ba3 corporate rating.

The revision reflects greater confidence that Las Vegas Sands will be able to reduce its debt ratio, which is required for a one-notch ratings upgrade.

"Las Vegas Sands would also need to adhere to a conservative long-term financial policy in order to achieve a Ba2 corporate family rating," said Keith Foley, a Moody's senior vice president.

The positive outlook also incorporates Moody's favorable view of Las Vegas Sands refinancing. The company's Chinese subsidiary, Sands China, refinanced its $3.5 billion credit facility and could raise another $1 billion in an effort to strengthen the company's balance sheet.

The company plans to retire its older loans covering The Venetian Macau and will use funds for construction on two development sites on the region's Cotai Strip.

"The affirmation of Las Vegas Sands corporate family rating reflects the strong performance and the favorable growth prospects for the company's Asian gaming assets, the high quality of its gaming and resort assets, and very good liquidity profile," Foley said.