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Ameristar Casinos Trims Losses in Fourth Quarter, Earns Small Profit for the Year

13 March 2000

Ameristar Casinos Inc. (Nasdaq: ASCA) said it lost $748,000 in the fourth quarter of 1999, an improvement over the fourth quarter of 1998, when the company lost $2.46 million.

Revenue for the quarter was $76.4 million, up from $66.9 million in the same period of 1998.

For all of 1999, the company earned a small profit, $205,000, after a large loss, $12.7 million, for the previous year. Revenue grew to $300 million, from $265 million

Ameristar is based in Las Vegas and owns Cactus Pete's Resort Casino and the Horseshu Hotel & Casino in Jackpot, Nevada; Ameristar Casino Vicksburg in Vicksburg, Mississippi; Ameristar Casino Council Bluffs in Council Bluffs, Iowa; and The Reserve Hotel-Casino in Henderson, a suburb of Las Vegas.

The company said it invested $26 million in capital improvements last year at its Council Bluffs casino, which is the company's most profitable. It had adjusted operating income of $4.97 million in the fourth quarter, on revenue of $29.7 million.

At Vicksburg, operating income was $3.97 million on revenue of $18.5 million. Ameristar's 150-room hotel there was open for its first full year in 1999.

The properties in Jackpot had operating income of $1.7 million on revenue of $14 million.

The Reserve had an operating loss of $1.2 million for the quarter, on revenue of $14 million. The Reserve opened in February 1998 and had a difficult first year. Ameristar said improvements in 1999 were the result of direct-marketing programs and an expanded "cash-back" feature for its slot players club.

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