888 Gaming Stock Brief Review

Article written by professional gambling writer Tom Somach

888 Holdings LLC, the parent company of Internet poker room Pacific Poker (www.pacificpoker.com), announced earlier this year that total revenues from all its Internet gambling operations were up 7% in 2006, compared to 2005.

The revenues rose $19 million, from $271 million in 2005 to $290 million in 2006, the company.

The news came as a surprise to many in the Internet gambling industry, as Pacific Poker suffered a huge drop in business last year when it pulled out of the US casino and poker market following the passage of UIGEA.

The company credited its comeback to a refocusing of its marketing efforts, away from the US to Europe and Asia.

Because of the volatility of the Internet gambling industry–not to mention the questionable legality–it is recommended that investors at this time do not invest in online gambling companies, or companies that have anything to do with the ownership or operation of online gambling sites.

The situation is just too dangerous, too risky and too unpredictable. Companies that dropped US and French customers suffered huge drops in stock value, or their increases weren’t as high as hoped. And companies that continue to accept US customers have seen their executives arrested by authorities, not a good thing for a company’s stock value.

There is a new bill before the U.S. Congress that seeks to legalize, license and regulate online gambling in the The bill is a long shot, but if it somehow passes and become law, then it may be a good idea to then buy stock in online gambling companies.

But until then, just say no or take extreme caution when choosing to buy online casino stocks.  For the risk adverse folks out there you might want to steer clear of gaming stocks.

On the other hand, if you still want to buy casino stocks online, then investing in solid corporations that have a long history of running real casinos in Las Vegas and elsewhere can sometimes be very profitable. Among the major casino stocks of this type are MGM Mirage, Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. and Boyd Gaming.

MGM Mirage is a casino corporation that owns and runs, among other things, Las Vegas casinos MGM Grand, Mirage, Bellagio, Circus Circus, Excalibur, Luxor, Mandalay Bay , Monte Carlo, New York New York and Treasure Island . Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. is a casino corporation that owns and run, among other things, Las Vegas casinos Harrah’s and Rio .

Boyd Gaming owns and runs, among other things, the Venetian casino in Las Vegas .All three companies have good track records and have paid steady dividends over the years. What’s more, if and when Internet gambling is legalized in the US, the values of companies such as these will rise sharply, as they will most certainly open up Internet casinos of their own, ready-made with well-known brand names.

Article by Tom Somach

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