Land-based casinos in New Jersey had a down month in October — due to the closure of the Trump Taj Mahal — while NJ online gambling posted huge gains.

AC revenue, at a glance

Atlantic City did not have a banner month in October, with total casino gaming revenue dipping year over year by 2.7 percent. In October 2015, revenue from casinos came in at $191.6 million; this past month, it stood at $186.4 million.

Things were less bleak If you take the shuttered Taj Mahal out of the mix. For current land-based casinos in AC, revenue actually increased 4.2 percent to $185.5 million year over year. The Taj was in the process of closing at the start of the month and closed on Oct. 10.

Most of the AC casinos ticked upwards in October, led by Tropicana, which saw revenue jump 14 percent to $24.8 million YoY. Other casinos that did well include Golden Nugget  (up more than 10 percent to $16.5 million) and Borgata (up 5 percent to $60.5 million).

Resorts and Bally’s both saw revenue decreases of about three percent.

For the entire calendar year, land-based casino revenue was roughly flat for 2016 ($2.036 billion) vs. 2015 ($2.046 billion).

NJ online gambling revenue makes things better

Online gambling revenue in the state topped $16.7 million in October, compared to $12.9 million in the prior period, reflecting an increase of almost 30 percent.

Golden Nugget led the way on the online side of things, generating nearly $4.1 million, an increase of more than 50 percent. The online arms of Tropicana, Caesars and Borgata all topped $3 million in revenue as well.

It was the second straight month of solid growth for AC online casinos.

With online gambling revenue included, total gaming revenue in the state only decreased 0.7 percent YoY.

Online gambling revenue for all of 2016 is up 1.4 percent to $2.2 billion, compared to the first 10 months of 2015.

What’s next for AC online gambling?

It’s a period of uncertainty for AC casinos. The Taj has closed, giving hope that this will help the casino industry find its floor in AC.

The prospect of North Jersey casinos went away when this month’s referendum was turned down by voters, which is seen as good news for AC. But the status of the city itself was in question as the state recently took over the government.

All of that — plus October’s encouraging numbers — should add up to good things for the existing casino operators, both on land and online, in November.

 

Dustin Gouker

About

Aside from his role as editor at LegalSportsReport.com, Dustin Gouker writes extensively about the legal online gaming and US online poker industries, having played poker recreationally for his entire adult life. He has also covered sports for The Washington Post and the D.C. Examiner, among others.