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Reuters Macau gambling revenue up 17.6 percent in August yr/yr

Sep 2 (Reuters) - Gambling revenue in Macau rose 17.6 percent in August year-on-year, supported by a steady flow of cash-rich mainland Chinese eager to gamble in China's only legal casino hub.

August's 30.7 billion patacas ($3.88 billion) revenue was the second strongest figure this year, according to government data released on Monday. Analysts had forecast August growth in the world's biggest gambling market to be up 17-19 percent. A Portuguese colony until 1999, Macau's gambling revenues are closely twinned with China's economy, with over two thirds of tourists coming from the mainland.