Bloomberg News

Atlantic City Gambling Revenue Little Changed Last Month

October 11, 2011

(Updates with analyst’s comment in third paragraph.)

Oct. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Atlantic City casino gambling revenue fell 0.6 percent in September, marking more than three years of decline, as competition from casinos and slots in neighboring states continued to attract gamblers.

Betting returns shrank to $294.7 million from a year earlier, New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement said today on its website. Slot machine revenue at the 11 casinos declined 1.9 percent and table game winnings rose 2.7 percent.

The drop was the smallest in more than a year, according to New Jersey Casino Control Commission data. Revenue in Atlantic City has been declining for 37 consecutive months. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie this year offered greater state assistance in return for overhauled regulations to help limit losses in Atlantic City.

“We think results will continue to remain soft, given our view of increased competition/alternatives for customers at nearby jurisdictions,” Joseph Greff, an analyst at JPMorgan Chase & Co. in New York, wrote in a note today.

Christie’s reforms included creation of a state-run tourism district in the area of the casinos and the Boardwalk and redirecting gaming tax revenue to improve the city.

Gambling in the second-biggest U.S. casino market after Las Vegas fell to $3.57 billion in 2010 from a peak of $5.2 billion in 2006.

For the nine months through September, revenue in Atlantic City slid 7.8 percent to $2.6 billion from a year earlier.

--Editors: Rob Golum, Anthony Palazzo

To contact the reporter on this story: Ksenia Galouchko in New York at kgalouchko1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net


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