In a dramatic turnaround following July’s disappointing decline of over 13% in gross gaming revenue (GGR), Atlantic City casinos shifted gear in August. The nine prominent resorts on the Atlantic City Boardwalk witnessed a resurgence in their retail gaming revenue, achieving an impressive $280.2 million in winnings from slots and table games.
The August triumph was underscored by a total winning of $210.5 million from slot machines and $69.7 million from table games, signifying a return to profitability. This combined total of approximately $280.2 million marked a year-over-year increase of 2.3%.
The revival was primarily driven by a 3% increase in terminal hold from slots. The felt income, however, stagnated compared to August 2022. The aforementioned figures for GGR and slot winnings are rated the second-highest and highest respectively for any August in the last nine years.
In addition, interactive gaming maintained its upward trajectory with remote players wagering a remarkable $155.2 million on iGaming platforms. This indicates an 18% uplift from the same period a year ago.
Bookmakers too perceived an optimistic trend; their income from the $725.9 million in bets placed was an impressive $96 million, a wholesome 47% increase from August 2022.
New Jersey, being one of the three most prosperous gaming sectors in tandem with Nevada and Pennsylvania, continued to record an uptick in GGR. The combined income of $531.6 million generated by Atlantic City casinos, iGaming platforms, and sportsbooks in August 2023 was nearly 13% higher than the same month in the previous year. This figure has been marked as the second-highest monthly GGR record in the history of the state’s gaming industry.
“The total gaming revenue for Atlantic City in August went past $500 million for only the second time in history and indicates a potentially strong financial year,” stated James Plousis, chair of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission.
However, despite these promising figures, casino executives have voiced concerns that the monthly revenue reports being promoted by state media do not reflect the true health of the industry. This is because they share a significant part of their monthly iGaming and sports betting revenues with third-party partners such as DraftKings and FanDuel.
Exceptionally high inflation and increased labor costs have added to their woes, significantly impacting the bottom lines. Even though the GGR experienced an 11% surge, the profit margins declined 18% to $281.4 million in the first half of 2023 despite the overall net revenue seeing a 1.5% hike to nearly $1.6 billion. This revenue includes the income obtained from gaming, hotel rooms, and sales from food and beverages.