NEVADA GAMING REVENUE: Bettors strike back
By Howard Stutz, Our
Partner at Las Vegas
LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- Gamblers hit a lucky streak in
Table game players and
sports bettors exited Nevada
casinos with a little more money in their pockets as the state's monthly
gaming win fell for only the second time in two years, according to
figures released Thursday by the Gaming Control Board.
Nevada casinos won $985 million
during the month, a decrease of 2.7 percent compared with $1.01 billion
won in September 2005. The fall wasn't as steep as in June, when statewide
gaming revenues declined almost 3.5 percent from June 2005.
Almost every area of Nevada reported
year-over-year decreases in gaming revenues during September. On the
Strip, the gaming win was $516.3 million, a drop of 4.3 percent from
$539.4 million a year ago. Clark
reported $807.8 million in gaming win, down 3.3 percent from $835.3
million in September 2005.
gaming win declined for the fourth straight month, falling 8.4 percent to
$47.4 million, compared with $51.7 million last September. Casinos in
Laughlin were off 5 percent, North Las Vegas
casinos were off 14.8 percent, Boulder Strip casinos were down 16.7
percent and revenues at Mesquite
casinos fell 16.7 percent.
The one notable
exception was the area referred to as "Balance of Clark County,"
which had a gaming win of $106.6 million, up 23.1 percent compared with
$86.6 million a year ago. The area includes the gaming revenues collected
at the South Point and Red Rock Resort, two casinos not open in September
Morgan Joseph gaming
analyst Adam Steinberg said the revenue figures may point toward the new
casinos taking business away from casinos in other parts of the valley.
"In general, the
locals market reported solid gains, as would be expected given the
addition of Red Rock and (South Point)," Steinberg said in a note to
investors. "However, we continue to believe these two properties are
cannibalizing from the older Las
Vegas locals properties. In particular, revenue
at both Boulder Strip and North
Las Vegas declined year over year."
downtown continued to suffer because of the closure in February of the
Lady Luck and general softness in the market.
numbers, Mayor Oscar Goodman was upbeat about the area's prospects. He
said a $100 million renovation of the Golden Nugget would be a boost.
"People will be
coming downtown in throngs," Goodman said at his weekly press
conference. "Next month, I think the numbers are going to be
Bear Stearns gaming
analyst Joe Greff said he didn't think the off month would affect the
stock prices of the major casino operators.
revenues declined for the Strip and the state, we think performance was
expected given third-quarter earnings releases and (we) do not expect much
reaction from investors," Greff said in an investors note.
Gaming Control Board
senior research analyst Frank Streshley said September 2006 had a tough
comparison with September 2005 going in. The $1.01 billion won last year
was a 9.4 percent increase from September 2004.
"We're looking at
the same scenario for the next several months," Streshley said.
Table game customers
were beneficiaries of the casinos' off month.
The win from table
games by casinos statewide was $331.7 million, down 8 percent compared
with $359 million last year.
statewide contributed $113.5 million to the total, which was off 8 percent
from $122.9 million in the month last year. In Strip casinos, revenue from
blackjack dipped almost 10 in September. The money won from blackjack
customers represented more than 42 percent of the Strip's revenues from
table games during the month, not counting baccarat.
casinos' win from craps was down 1.5 percent while the gaming revenues
collected from mini-baccarat, a version of the card game played on a table
similar to a blackjack table, were down 52.6 percent.
The money won from
sports bettors, which also figured into the table game win, was $22.4
million in September, down 22.6 percent from a year ago.
"It looks like
the sports books had a tough start to the NFL season," Streshley said
of wagering on the first month of regular-season games for professional
The casinos take
statewide from slot machines was also off slightly; $640.7 million
compared with $641.5 million a year ago.
wagered $14.1 billion in September; $11.7 billion on slot machines which
was up 4.1 percent, and $2.4 billion on table games, which was down almost
7 percent from September 2005.
More Macau slot parlors planned
reported by the Hong Kong Standard
Macau– "A long-awaited moment in
French Lick, Ind., will arrive Tuesday
when investors snip the ribbon on Indiana's
11th casino and unveil a refurbished century-old hotel.
"The opening of
the $382 million French Lick Springs Resort & Casino is viewed as a
huge step in a decade-long push to revive gambling and reverse Orange County's woeful economic fortunes.
this morning, after a brief ceremony and ribbon-cutting, invited guests
will try out the slot machines and play poker and blackjack until
1,200-slot casino will close for two days and open to the general public
Friday if the Indiana Gaming Commission gives the green light after final
all the hoopla is the high-stakes gamble being taken by the developers
— the Bloomington medical-device
manufacturer Cook Group Inc. and the real-estate developer Lauth Property
Group Inc. of Indianapolis.