Casino Industry Insider news bites - 06-23-2009

Jun 23, 2009 5:04 PM
The Insider by Ray Poirier |

Shares of Ameristar Casinos Inc. (ASCA) were able to overcome a declining market on Monday following a major upgrade by analysts at JP Morgan. ASCA shares closed at $18.60 each, up $0.51 for the day.

Faced with huge budgetary problems, Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland has reversed his position and will now favor installing slot machines at the state’s seven racetracks. A staunch gambling opponent, he called his decision "difficult."

Donald Trump is said to have joined his banking friend Andy Beal, noted Las Vegas poker player, in an effort to buy Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. (TRMP), currently in bankruptcy. To win, the partners will have to outbid the current bondholders.

Former Las Vegas gaming executive, Alex Yemenidjian, chairman and CEO of Armenco Holdings LLC, has been approved to take over the Tropicana Hotel/Casino on the Las Vegas Strip.

Slots revenue may be stabilizing in Connecticut. In May, Mohegan Sun took in $69.6 million or 7 percent less than last year. However, it was $5.6 million more than reported in April. Foxwoods Resort Casino won $62.2 million in May, a 14 percent decline from last year but $4.7 million more than won in April.

The Mashpee Wampanoag tribe of Massachusetts has voided its casino contract with investors Sol Kerzner and Len Wolman, the original builders of Foxwoods Resort Casino. The Wampanoags said the terms were unfair to the tribe.