Atlantic City Casinos Suffer from Irene
Hurricane Irene may not have brought the devastation that many feared to the east coast of the US, but 11 casinos in Atlantic City are facing a substantial financial impact from lost revenues over the weekend.
Mandatory evacuations forced all Atlantic City Casinos to close for just the third time in the city's history, with the doors shuttered at 8 PM on Friday and re-opening for business on Monday morning.
While the casinos suffered very minimal structural damage from the hurricane the financial damage could be significant; a similar three-day shutdown in 2006 during a state budget crisis cost Atlantic City casinos an estimated $50 million in lost gambling revenues, and the impact from Irene could be just as severe.
Tropicana CEO Tony Rodio has estimated that Irene has cost his casino about $4 million, with Resorts on the Boardwalk CEO Dennis Gomes estimating their losses at about $3 million.
As far as US casinos, Atlantic City is second only to Las Vegas as far as total gambling revenues. Atlantic City has seen its overall revenues dip in recent years, struggling with a double whammy of a lingering recession in the US as well as increased competition from new casinos in neighboring states.
Overall gambling revenues in Atlantic City are down about 7% in 2011 as compared to 2010, with July revenues off about 7% as well when compared to July 2010.