Currently, Atlantic City is home to nine brick-and-mortar casinos:
- Golden Nugget
- Hard Rock Atlantic City
- Ocean Resort
Ups and downs of Atlantic City casino revenue
Atlantic City casinos reported $231.9 million in revenue for September.
That figure represents a 14.1 percent drop from the $269.9 million posted in August. It is, however, a solid 7.7 percent increase from the $215.4 million reported in September 2017.
The decline from August to September isn’t too alarming. New Jersey casinos have a history of slowing down after Labor Day. What may be concerning is the amount of the decline.
In 2017, revenue from August to September saw a 4.1 percent decline. This year’s double-digit percentage decline undoubtedly raised some eyebrows.
Compared to last year, the industry saw gains in all three gaming categories, too:
- Table games ($62.0 million, +5.6%)
- Poker ($3.1 million, +63.2%)
- Slot machines ($166.8 million, +8.6%)
Month over month, however, shows only poker reporting growth:
- Table games (-14.9%)
- Poker (+40.9%)
- Slot machines (-15.0%)
It is good to see poker post some positive news for a change. Since New Jersey sports betting launched in June, poker has been taking a back seat to the shiny new betting option.
Even, though poker posted numbers in positive territory, it still is just a drop in the revenue bucket for a casino. Poker, as a whole, continues to lack any consistent traction.
A closer look at Atlantic City casinos
Overall, it would not be a stretch of the imagination to think AC casinos are wishing they could have a do-over. It is never a good sign when overall revenue dips 14 percent from the previous month.
At this time last year, only seven casinos were operating. The fear, with two new casinos on the horizon, was that the new casinos would cannibalize the revenue of the existing casinos.
While it is still early yet, it seems as if some of those fears are coming to fruition.
Six of the seven operational casinos in 2017 reported significant declines when compared to the same month last year. Tropicana was the only casino of the bunch to post a positive number. Even so, a slight gain of 0.5 percent to $29.9 million is nothing to brag about.
Borgata maintained its leader status by posting $60.5 million for a 13.5 percent year-over-year decline. Caesars’ revenue of $22.9 million was 23.2 percent off of last year’s figure, the largest decline of the group.
The two newest casinos on the Boardwalk didn’t fare much better.
Hard Rock Atlantic City posted $25.9 million. After a guitar-smashing opening, that figure represents the third straight monthly decline.
Ocean Resort Casino saw $14.9 million in revenue. Not only is the casino sitting at the bottom of the list, but it also posted its lowest revenue figure since it cut the red ribbon.
Atlantic City casino September revenue breakdown
|Casino||Table & Other||Poker||Slot Machines||Total Revenue|
|Hard Rock||$8,671,677||$ -||$17,247,725||$25,919,402|
The NJ gaming industry as a whole
Beyond the brick-and-mortar casino, the picture is a much brighter for New Jersey gaming. Total gaming revenue includes the retail and online figures for casino, poker, and sports betting.
Overall, and including Monmouth Park and Meadowlands Racetrack, the industry brought in $281.7 million compared to $235.8 million in September 2017.
Of course, last year NJ sports betting was only a dream. That helps put the 19.5 percent increase into perspective.
David Rebuck, Director of Division of Gaming Enforcement, commented in a press release:
“Driven by the explosive growth in sports wagering and continuing improvements in Internet gaming and brick-and-mortar casino win results, the gaming industry produced another month of superb revenue increases. The revenue results point to a strong finish for New Jersey’s gaming industry in 2018.”
New Jersey online gaming pulled more than its share of the weight by reporting $25.8 million for the month. The result is a 26.3 percent increase when compared to the $20.4 million in 2017.
Sports betting revenue was $24 million for the month. More than half of the revenue came from mobile sports betting, where DraftKings Sportsbook led the eight NJ sportsbook apps.