After two consecutive years of declines, Pennsylvania’s casino industry is showing signs of a modest rebound.
According to new figures from the state’s Gaming Control Board, gamblers handed over $2.3 billion at slot machines during the last fiscal year, up a fraction from the twelve months prior.
Valley Forge and Parx Casino both saw strong growth locally, while Harrah’s and SugarHouse were basically flat. Analyst Christopher Jones with Union Gaming Group says an improving national economy is encouraging customers to open their wallets.
“It is not just Pennsylvania. You are seeing it pretty much across the board, whether it be in the Gulf Region or even further in the Midwest of the United States,” Jones said. “We are just seeing a resurgence of regional gaming trends.”
For now, however, it isn’t necessarily more people hitting the casino floors. It’s more high rollers.
“When you talk to the operators, perhaps it tends to be a little less about the number of people,” says Jones. “It tends to be the same people feeling more comfortable to spend a little more.”
While Atlantic City has seen four of its facilities shut down in recent years, Pennsylvania officials approved the opening of another casino to open near the stadiums in South Philly.