Mississippi Casino Revenue Takes a Dip in June
Casino revenue in the Gulf Coast state of Mississippi was down in June over the same period in 2012, this according to a report published by Bloomberg Business Week. Mississippi offers casinos along its Gulf coastline, and also has river casinos.
Bloomberg reported that May figures were more optimistic, with a slight increase reported for that month over last year. In fact, over a 12-month period, May was the only month to see gains over the previous year’s figures.
Revenue down 7 percent
According to media reports, Mississippi saw its casino revenue decline by 7 percent when compared to what was taken in during the month of June, 2012. The total reported by the Mississippi Department of Revenue was $174.5 million.
The annual gambling revenue Mississippi collected in 2012 represented a tiny 1 percent gain over 2011, leaving some hopeful that 2013 might lead to even more improvement in the market. That has not turned out to be the case, with most attributing 2012’s gains to the fact that revenue was especially bad in 2011 due to widespread flooding.
Neighboring Louisiana didn’t fare much better last month, having taken in $8.3 million less than it did the previous year. While still not as robust as it once was, Louisiana’s overall casino revenue decline has not been as sharp as that experienced by Mississippi, which reported all numbers except those generated by the Choctaw Indians, who are not required to provide such figures.
Similar story playing out across the nation
States around the nation, particularly those with longer-established casino gambling, are finding themselves encountering the same kinds of issues Mississippi is facing as competition for gambling dollars heats up around the United States. As more states look to boost revenue to buoy a tax base eroded by the housing crisis and the continued stagnant economy, often the customers they lure are coming from across state lines, and aren’t spending their money in casino properties they may have visited in the past.
One such example is Pennsylvania, which last year was able to usurp the title of the second largest market for gambling in the United States, snatching it away from the former east coast headquarters of casino gambling, Atlantic City. Pennsylvania’s gambling expansion has proven successful because its new casino properties are more attractive to, and often a closer drive for, patrons who would have once traveled to Atlantic City.
Atlantic City has seen its revenues decline yearly since 2006, a record-setting year for the casino industry there. In Mississippi, the story is much the same, though gambling revenue peaked a year later than it did in New Jersey, hitting its high in the year 2007.
The story is much the same in New England, where planned casinos in the state of Massachusetts are anticipated to poach customers from existing casinos in nearby Connecticut, home to some of the nation’s largest and most-famous gambling resorts. Massachusetts is looking to put casinos in Boston and the western part of state. Additionally, it will be issuing one license for a slots-only gambling parlor.
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