Indiana's Casino Revenues For February Disturbing

Indiana's Casino Revenues For February DisturbingIn February, Indiana’s casino gambling revenues dropped 15% to fall below $200 million for the first time since January 2003, when there was one less casino and two less racinos in the state.
The Northwest part of Indiana, where five river boats are located, was especially affected by bitterly cold weather, and saw their combined revenues plummet by 12.1% to $81.59 million in February, compared to $92.87 million for the same month in 2013.
“The numbers are disturbing. We did see the largest percentage decrease for a February ..Weather, economic conditions and competition from a land-based casino in the Cincinnati market were partly to blame. But we need to look west across the border at the huge number of video gaming terminals” commented Indiana Gaming Insight Editor Ed Feigenbaum.
Typically, February is one of the casino boats best months and they rely on a strong performance in February and March to get their businesses off to a solid start to the year. The casinos will now be hoping that those gamblers who were unable to brave the freezing temperatures will now boost their spending in March, although realistically they are unlikely to gamble two or three times their usual amounts simply because their spending was limited in January and February.
Breaking the riverboat casino’s figures down, Horseshoe revenues plummeted by 20% in February compared to the same month a year earlier, Majestic Star II was down by 14.3%, Majestic Star by 9.8%, Blue Chip by 5%, and Ameristar was also down by 2.4%.
Over the past few years, Indiana’s casino industry has suffered from increasing out-of-state competition from states such as Illinois and Ohio. In spite of receiving $10 billion in taxes since the mid-1990s, the last few years have seen a dramatic decline in the state’s casino tax collections, dropping from a peak of $876 million in 2009, to just $752 million for fiscal 2013.

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