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AGEM issues report on slot hold percentages in U.S.

20 August 2015

(PRESS RELEASE) -- The Association of Gaming Equipment Manufacturers (AGEM) announced today that it has issued a comprehensive report titled “Building Better Business – Assessing the impact of hold percentages on overall slot revenue” that reviews the impact of tightening hold percentages in key gaming states across the United States.

AGEM engaged respected Las Vegas-based firm Applied Analysis to assess a variety of factors impacting slot revenues and to focus on the states with published slot hold percentages and the corresponding revenue and report the results going as far back as 1990 from Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and South Dakota.

Download AGEM’s U.S. Slot Hold Analysis report in its entirety here:

Download AGEM’s “Building Better Business” report in its entirety here:

Among the report’s key contents:
· Blended hold percentage has increased 14.5% from 2004 to 2014 and slot revenue has increased 1.1% during the same period
· During the past decade (since 2004), 10 of out 12 states (83%) reported slot hold percentage increases
· During the past decade, seven out of 12 states (58%) reported slot win declines
· Slot win among the surveyed states reached a peak of $26 billion in 2007 and finished at $22 billion in 2014
· Blended slot hold hit a low of 5.96% in 1996 and hit an all-time high of 7.70% in 2014
· Iowa at 9.37% had the highest slot hold in 2014; Nevada at 6.40% the lowest
· New Jersey experienced the biggest slot-win decline from 2004-14, falling 47.3%
· Iowa showed the highest slot hold increase, tightening 32.9% from 2004-14
· Florida hold loosened by 9.2% from 2004-14 and revenue increased 153.8% during the same time period

Excerpts from the report’s overall conclusions include:
· “While economic conditions appear to be a material factor in slot performance trends, there may be other factors impacting the industry’s overall performance, most notably following the conclusion of the most recent recession. Consumer spending has improved in most major gaming markets throughout the United States in recent years, while gaming volumes continue to contract.”
· “While statistical correlations on a state-by-state basis vary due to any number of factors, the broader, aggregate trends would suggest a rising hold percentage has not translated into incremental gaming revenue for operators during the post-recession era. In fact, they very well may be contributing to its decline.”

In addition to the highlights from Applied Analysis’ complete research found by clicking here, the AGEM report, accessible here, includes previously published commentary on the slot hold topic from respected gaming industry experts and progressive thinkers such as Buddy Frank, Charlie Lombardo, Andrew Klebanow, Bruce Rowe, Roger Gros, Allon Englman, Steven M. Gallaway, Daniel Mitchell and Louis Ross.

“While it is clear there are a wide variety of factors impacting gaming revenues, this report is important for both suppliers and operators and gives additional perspective on the effect of slot holds on the player experience,” said Marcus Prater, AGEM Executive Director. “It is understood that there is a delicate balance between giving players a fair entertainment value while maximizing revenues for casino operators. It is also important to note that the industry needs to consider all new ideas to stop the erosion of slot revenues in markets throughout the U.S. With that in mind, AGEM is committed to the idea of business development for its members, who in turn are committed to ensuring casino operators have the games and technology to attract and entertain their players.”

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