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With the help of a monster December, Pennsylvania’s casino industry managed to set a new revenue record in 2017.
Pennsylvania casinos generated $3.227 billion in 2017, besting the previous record of $3.213 billion set last year.
Zeroing in on December, casino revenue was up across the board. Table game revenue jumped over five percent and slot revenue ticked up for the third time in four months, after 11 straight months of decline.
Here’s a look at the top line December numbers:
Pennsylvania’s prolonged slot revenue drop is so pronounced that the beginning of the downward trend (October 2016) is a distant memory that no longer appears in our 12-month tracking. However, the trend might be reversing. Slot revenue has increased in three of the last four months.
*Accounting for the leap year in 2016, the normalized numbers in February have slot revenue down just .5 percent YoY.
Collectively, Pennsylvania’s casinos saw slot revenue dip just over one percent for the year. Four casinos did manage to increase their slot revenue haul year over year.
Table games were more of a mixed bag for Pennsylvania casino operators. Table game revenue increased at six casinos, and decreased at six casinos.
You can see the full numbers here.
Once you get past the two top dogs — Parx Casino and Sands Bethlehem — and the two Rush Street properties that have a solid hold on the Nos. 3 and 4 spots — Rivers Casino and SugarHouse Casino — the Pennsylvania market turns into a veritable logjam. There are four casinos all hovering around $20 million in revenue.
This logjam has persisted for most of the year, but Meadows Casino (which was recently acquired by Penn National) has been making gains of late, particularly on the table game side of the ledger, where revenue has been on the rise for most of 2017.
Over the past seven months, table game revenue at Meadows has grown by:
Mount Airy has been on a tear throughout 2017. The casino’s slot revenue was up over four percent in 2017 and table game revenue rose by over 17 percent.
Mount Airy still has a long way to go to catch up to the likes of Harrah’s, Mohegan Sun, Hollywood and Meadows, but it is closing the gap.
The loosening of restrictions on Category 3 casinos in the gaming expansion bill has already paid off in spades for Valley Forge. After paying the state a one-time fee to do away with the “amenity fee” the casino has seen profits surge, and surpassed Presque Isle (a Category 1 racino) in revenue in December.