NATIONAL NEWS

New Jersey’s gambling revenue was up by 5.3% in July. The Borgata casino set a new monthly record

Aug 16, 2023, 1:00 PM

Actor Kelsey Grammer pours beers during a guest bartending stint at the Golden Nugget casino in Atl...

Actor Kelsey Grammer pours beers during a guest bartending stint at the Golden Nugget casino in Atlantic City, N.J. on July 14, 2023. Atlantic City's casinos won 3% less from in-person gamblers in July as they did a year earlier, although total gambling revenue, including internet and sports betting at casinos and horse tracks, rose by 5.3%. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — Atlantic City’s casinos, the three New Jersey horse tracks that take sports bets, and their online partners won over half a billion dollars from gamblers in July, up 5.3% from a year earlier, figures released Wednesday show.

The month was particularly good for Atlantic City’s top-performing casino, the Borgata, which broke its own record for the most money any Atlantic City casino has ever won in a single month, with more than $127 million in casino, internet and sports betting winnings.

But the amount of money won from in-person gamblers at the nine casinos declined by 3% compared with a year ago, to less than $290 million.

Jane Bokunewicz, director of the Lloyd Levenson Institute at Stockton University, which studies the Atlantic City gambling industry, said the 3% dip is not particularly worrisome.

“As is the nature of the gaming industry, there are always fluctuations in the monthly revenues and this 3% decline does not appear to be part of a lasting trend,” she said.

Total gambling revenue, including money from internet and sports betting at casinos and three horse racing tracks, was $506 million in July.

That number was the highest in any July in over a decade, said James Plousis, chairman of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission.

The amount of money won from gamblers physically present on casino floors is the key metric for Atlantic City casino executives. Internet and sports betting money helps the bottom line somewhat, but that money must be shared with third parties such as sports books and technology platforms, and is not solely for the casinos to keep.

In-person gambling is also a closely watched metric when compared to the levels the casinos were experiencing before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Just two of the nine casinos — Hard Rock and Ocean — won more from in-person gamblers last month than they did in July 2019, although several came close to equaling that mark.

The Borgata’s record-breaking $127 million total win in July was up nearly 3% from a year earlier. It broke its own monthly revenue record of $124 million in July 2022.

Borgata president Travis Lunn said the strong performance is due to positive customer response to the former Water Club hotel, now redone as the MGM Tower; a high-limit slots lounge and a new restaurant, none of which were available a year ago.

Hard Rock won $62.7 million in July, up nearly 5%; Golden Nugget won nearly $54 million, up nearly 10%; Ocean won $42.4 million, down 2%; Tropicana won $32.3 million, down nearly 10%; Harrah’s won $25.2 million, down 4.2%; Caesars won $25.1 million, down 1.5%; Bally’s won $24.1 million, up more than 16%, and Resorts won $15.3 million, down more than 16%. Resorts Digital, the casino’s online arm, won $59.5 million, up nearly 53%.

The online-only Caesars Entertainment Interactive NJ won $8.5 million, down nearly 22%.

The casinos and three horse tracks took $587 million in sports bets in July, keeping $61 million of that as revenue after paying off winning bets and other expenses.

Internet betting brought in $155 million in July, up 13.5% from a year earlier.

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Follow Wayne Parry on X, formerly known as Twitter, at www.twitter.com/WayneParryAC.

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New Jersey’s gambling revenue was up by 5.3% in July. The Borgata casino set a new monthly record