Gaming Winners and Losers

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With casino-hotel revenues expected to drop 2.9 percent this year, some Las Vegas gambling establishments could be hard hit. Slot machines, however, may prove the exception to the rule. "Players who have incurred major losses from financial investments over the past 12 months may pass on the high-stakes tables for the next couple of years," says George Van Horn, senior analyst with IBISWorld, an independent publisher of industry research.

Gross gaming revenue for Nevada in 2008 was nearly $12.9 billion, about 1.8 percent higher than the previous year. That number could fall by 3.2 percent this year due to a drop in international and domestic visitors, as well as tightening in the corporate sector. To make matters worse, Las Vegas is also facing tougher competition from the U.K.; Hong Kong and Macau, China; Eastern Europe; and the Middle East.

Revenues for non-casino hotels may decline by 2.1 percent this year. And the instant-gratification of poker machines and sports betting is likely to woo many gamblers away from state-run lotteries.

IBISWorld expects slot-machine gambling on Native American Reservations will benefit from agreements with large casino operators.

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