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Mississippi Casino Revenue Continues Record Slide

For many states, the end to the economic recession brought an increase in casino gambling activity. States such as Florida, Louisiana, and Nevada have rebounded in grand fashion from the low revenue figures seen during the recession.

One state that is not experiencing the gaming revival is Mississippi. Casinos in Mississippi have been struggling to gain back customers, and they received more bad news from the Department of Revenue this week.

According to figures released Monday, casino revenue at Mississippi casinos dropped 4.4%, to $170.2 million. That figure represents the drop from the same period in 2012.

The river casinos took the worst hit, with the 18 river casinos combining to drop 10% from September 2012. The coastal casinos fared much better, increasing revenue to $88 million. The $88 million represents a 1.7% increase from last year.

The year-over-year monthly loss is miniscule when compared to the year-over-year figures. In the past 12 months, revenue was down over 75% from the state's best year during that span, back in 2007. Whether the state will ever fully recover from the recession is now being questioned.

"With the amount of expansion within the casino industry in the US over the past few years, the state's that previously held a monopoly on casino gaming have all seen revenue decreases," said analyst Harvey Grant. "And with casinos in nearly every state now, it is getting harder for Mississippi, New Jersey, and Nevada to attract the traveling gamblers they used to make a living on."

Mississippi was hit hard by Hurricane Katrina back in 2005, and worked to rebuild their casino industry. Although the casinos in Mississippi did not see the widespread destruction that occurred in Louisiana, the damage was still enough to set the casinos back a few years. When the industry started to rebound from the storm, the recession hit, and the casinos have been playing catch-up ever since.

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