Atlantic City Casino Revenues Drop By Half In Last 9 Years
The struggles of Atlantic City Casinos in the last few years are well known but the exact extent is a surprise to even the experts. The latest figures released by the state Division of Gaming Enforcement show what a dismal year 2015 was. The remaining eight state casinos only took in $2.56 billion which is a decline of 6.5% from 2014.
While as we reported some believe that the downsizing of the number of casinos is a necessary evil to ensure a healthy and sustainable long term market in AC, there are those who are asking if the market will ever return to its glory days. Adding fuel to the fire is that New Jersey lawmakers just approved a bill that would introduce a referendum on whether to expand casino gambling to the northern part of the state. This has got many concerned that it will further damage the Atlantic City gaming market that is already struggling to survive.
The latest figures released are a far cry from the $5.2 billion annual revenues of 2006. For those looking to see the positive side, the latest revenues are from the eight state casinos remaining which of course is less than the twelve that started at the beginning of the year. If you adopt this approach then there was an actual rise of 3.1 percent from 2014.
Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian is trying to remain optimistic but believes thee long term damage to jobs and money has been made already. He said,” We had a monopoly and 12 casinos. Now there are 30-something casinos in the northeast, and we’re about to have gambling in the northern part of the state. There are more gambling places than there are gamblers willing to gamble.”
The top performers was the Golden Nugget which recorded a 24.1 percent increase for the year to $231.2 million while The Taj Mahal saw the biggest drop of 16.5 percent to $180.2 million. On the positive side online gambling in New Jersey saw a 21.2 percent rise in 2015 recording full year revenues of $149 million in 2015.