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Slots revenue down 12% in December

By Brian Hallenbeck

Publication: The Day

Published January 16. 2013 4:00AM

December was unkind to the casinos, at least in terms of slot-machine revenues.

Both Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun reported Tuesday that their slots "win," the amount they kept from wagers after paying out prizes, fell 12 percent last month compared to December 2011.

It marked the 12th straight month of year-over-year declines for the tribally owned casinos.

Foxwoods, including MGM Grand at Foxwoods, reported a December win of $44.2 million, down 12.1 percent from the $50.2 million it won in the same month a year earlier. Mohegan Sun's December win of $50 million was 12.2 percent less than the $57 million it won in December 2011.

Bobby Soper, Mohegan Sun's president and chief executive officer, said the results were "reflective of the continuing economic conditions."

Weather was a factor, too.

"We lost a weekend with snow the Saturday before Christmas," Soper said. "It had some lingering impact that Sunday. If you normalize (the revenue numbers) for that weekend, December was not that bad at all."

December 2011 was especially mild, helping the casinos post year-over-year gains in slot revenue that month.

"Clearly, we were impacted by the economy and new competition," Foxwoods CEO Scott Butera said, referring to Resorts World Casino, the slots facility at the Aqueduct horse racing track in New York City.

Resorts World's full impact had yet to be felt in December 2011. Then in its second full month of operation, Resorts World won $43.3 million that month. Last month, it won $59.7 million, a year-over-year increase of nearly 38 percent.

As Pennsylvania's relatively new casinos become "more seasoned" they also are having a greater impact on the Connecticut casinos, Butera said.

"We're hoping the changes we're making in our marketing and improvements to the property will help turn things around," he added.






Total win (in millions): $44.2

Yearly change: -12.1%

State contribution (in millions): $11.5

Hold: * 8.05%

Operating units: 6,229


Total win (in millions): $50.0

Yearly change: -12.2%

State contribution (in millions): $12.5

Hold :* $8.12%

Operating units: 5,559

*Hold is the average percent of total wagers kept by the casino.

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