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TheStreet Open House

No October Jackpot for Atlantic City Casinos

Stocks in this article: HET MGM HLT BYD

Other notable declines were posted at the Showboat Casino Hotel (down 20.8%), owned by Harrah's; Bally's Atlantic City (down 18.5%), a Harrah's property; Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino (down 17.3%), and the Tropicana Casino and Resort, whose parent company on Monday filed a plan to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The Tropicana was down 16.2% for the month.

The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, a joint venture between Boyd Gaming (BYD) and MGM Mirage (MGM), which last week laid off 400 workers, was down 2.5%.

The Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort was up 20.5%, helped by the opening of a second hotel tower, and luckier than usual play in its casino.

Harrah's Resort Atlantic City was the only other casino to post a revenue increase, up 63%. It, too, was helped by the opening of a second hotel tower earlier this year.

Another factor hurting October's revenue was a smoking ban that took effect Oct. 15. Although it was be put on hold for at least a year on Nov. 16, the ban has already done its damage at some casinos.

Tolosa said slot revenue at Harrah's four Atlantic City casinos was down by 12 percent for the first 15 days of October. But once the ban took effect, slots numbers fell 20 percent in the final two weeks of the month.

A similar effect was seen at the three casinos run by Trump Entertainment Resorts, company CEO Mark Juliano said.

He said the opening of the Chairman Tower at the Taj Mahal in late September started paying off big in October.

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