Declining revenue batters many Mississippi casinos

Month after month, Mississippi’s casinos are winning less from gamblers.
Some months, such as August, see a blip, and revenue rises a little. But those are exceptions. After hitting nearly $2.9 billion in 2007, revenue fell 22 percent to $2.25 billion in 2012. And the take is on track to dip another $100 million in 2013, state figures show.

Revenue is dropping because fewer people are coming through the doors at the state’s 30 casinos. The number of customers fell from 10.1 million in the months of April, May and June 2007 to 6.4 million in the same three months of 2013, according to the Mississippi Gaming Commission.

The figures don’t include casinos operated by the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, which doesn’t report figures to the state.

What was Mississippi’s miracle industry of the 1990s has 15,000 fewer employees than it did in 2000, and the slide also is cutting into gambling taxes.