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Atlantic City September Casino Win Expected to Drop

10 October 2003

ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey – As reported by the Press of Atlantic City Press: "The September casino-revenue report will be lousy, a marketing war could be brewing and several casinos are trying to attract high-profile restaurants, a Wall Street analyst reported Thursday.

"The new Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, meanwhile, has surpassed 500,000 names in its customer database, with gamblers most often citing Harrah's and Trump Taj Mahal as the last casino they visited, Deutsche Bank Securities analyst Marc Falcone said in a 14-page report released two days after an investor field trip here.

"Falcone said he expects the September industry revenue report due out next week to show a decline from the year-earlier win of $371 million, even with Borgata's results.

"…He blamed the effects of Hurricane Isabel and the placement of most of Labor Day weekend in August. Harrah's officials said the hurricane cost the industry between 3 and 4 percentage points of growth, Falcone stated.

"Casino executives told Falcone that October is off to a better start, but that some casinos are boosting incentives to stem the flow of customers to Borgata during the seasonal slowdown. Casinos fear a market-share war that could crimp fourth-quarter profits and lead to more layoffs.

"…Most casinos have passed along the majority of new state gaming taxes to their customers, Falcone said after interviewing gaming executives. That includes the $3-per-room surcharge, the doubling of the state parking fee to $3 (although most casinos charge $4 or $5), and the 4.25 percent tax on the value of complimentaries, he said…"

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