Hurricane Katrina dealt a bad hand to gambling enterprises in Biloxi plus the rest regarding the Gulf Coast, but those businesses have played a major role in getting the complete region straight back on its legs now.
Hurricane Katrina battered the Gulf Coast a decade ago, as well as for obvious reasons, most regarding the discussion about the storm, its aftermath, and its own effect on the region has been in the really real human stories that impacted those in New Orleans, Mississippi, and beyond.
But there is another similarly real tale to be told, one of the gaming industry that has been impacted dramatically by Katrina, only to not only rebound itself, but also help those in need of assistance during and following the storm.
Gambling played an important economic role soon after Hurricane Katrina, and it did much more quickly than might have been expected provided the circumstances.
After the damage caused to many casinos in Biloxi, Gulfport, and elsewhere, local officials had beenn’t even sure they would be able to convince gaming myfreepokies.com that is major to come back to the region, considering the high costs of rebuilding or restoring their operations.
Casinos Return to Find Success
But eventually, those operators and their casinos did keep coming back.
‘I do not think anyone ever thought about perhaps not rebuilding,’ Hollywood Casino Gulf Coast and Boomtown Biloxi CFO Wade Howk told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. ‘People took their time deciding what to do, but it was a place no one was going to give up on.’
Aided by changes in Mississippi law that permitted casinos to be built somewhat offshore to better protect themselves against future storms, the operators decided to reconstruct. Now, 11 casinos are in operation in Biloxi, Gulfport, and Bay St. Louis, just two less than prior to the storm.
The casinos are not exactly just like these people were before Katrina, however. Many are smaller, and the Gulf Coast casinos now use only just a little more than half as a decade was done by them earlier in the day. But there is however no doubt why these businesses have provided enormous economic benefits to the spot that few other companies had been in a position to do.
According to a 2014 study by Oxford Economics, the gaming industry contributes more than $4 billion to the economy in Mississippi. But what no one could have expected was that, in the full years rigtht after the hurricane, video poker revenues spiked in New Orleans and throughout Louisiana.
Stress May Have Driven Surge in Local Gambling
The drive back again to gaming may appear surprising to some. But in accordance with gambling addiction specialist Deborah Smith, it was very nearly predictable.
‘Anytime there’s a disaster that is natural people are going to experience PTSD,’ Smith told ESPN.com. ‘They feel terrible, in addition they want to feel better. Gambling actually helps them feel better for the brief moment.’
Of course, many of these people could have gambled significantly more than they need in the wake of these a tragedy. Not surprisingly, both Louisiana and Mississippi saw spikes in calls up to a problem that is national hotline following the disaster, though that trend leveled down after a few years.
The relative success of the gaming industry isn’t a fairy tale happy closing for the region, though. Katrina certainly left a mark that continues to be being experienced today, with many lost lives or livelihoods, especially in New Orleans, and much more particularly in the city’s African-American community, which in lots of ways is nevertheless rebuilding a good decade later.
But the video gaming industry remains of vital importance to the Gulf Coast. And today, the threat that is biggest isn’t another hurricane, but rather the expansion of gaming in neighboring states.
‘Everyone in Biloxi [acknowledges] an expansion in Alabama will be a major negative, as it would cut off the business enterprise from Mobile and the Florida Panhandle,’ wrote video gaming analyst Alex Bumazhny of Fitch Ratings provider previously this year.
For the present time, that’s one hurricane which includesn’t landed yet, much to every person’s relief. But it still could in the not-too-distant future, and also the impact of nearby gambling could be just as hard to combat within the region as any Cat 5 storm.
Macau Gambling Revenues Continue Sharp Decline
Macau casinos are hoping to make additional money through non-gaming tasks, but some doubt or perhaps a Las Vegas model shall work here. (Image: BBC)
Macau had been allowed to be recovering from its casino battles at this point, with all the Chinese territory now well over a 12 months into declines triggered by an anti-corruption drive in Beijing and other factors.
But there appears to be no improvement in store for the gambling hub anytime soon, as gross gaming revenue fell by another 35.5 percent in August to mark the 15th straight month of decrease for Macau’s casino industry.
Revenues for the month dropped to 18.6 billion patacas ($2.3 billion), still a figure that produces Macau the gambling center that is largest in the globe.
However, this is a far cry from the forms of numbers seen up through early 2014, when the city earned as much as 38 billion patacas ($4.8 billion) in a month.
New Casinos Do Little to Improve Revenues
August’s decrease had been expected to be a whole lot worse in some circles, having a survey of analysts by Bloomberg finding they expected of a 38 percent autumn.
But that may come because little comfort to casino operators, that has hopes that newly opened resorts in the city would offer a boost to tourism.
But while those projects, such as the phase that is latest of expansion by Galaxy Entertainment, opened in May, they have done absolutely nothing to improve revenue in the city.
Travel from China, that is the biggest motorist of business in Macau, was actually down just as before this summer, with July’s tourism figures showing a six percent decline compared to the year before.
Decline Causes Austerity Measures to Start Working
The continued decline has gotten to the stage where Macau’s government can no much longer ignore their impact. About 80 per cent of the regional budget that is governmental from gambling taxes, meaning that the sharp falloff was eventually going to require some cutbacks.
Those austerity measures had been finally established on though they have been modest, at least for now tuesday.
Public spending will be reduced by about 1.4 billion patacas ($180 million) for the 2015 fiscal year, mostly impacting the purchase of day-to-day supplies and some third-party services.
The long term isn’t looking particularly promising for Macau’s casinos, either. The recent devaluation of this Chinese yuan and trouble in the Chinese stock market could continue to hurt profits at gambling enterprises there, especially by reducing the already declining VIP player base that operators long relied on.
Some Question Diversification Will Help
All among these issues have led to renewed calls for Macau to diversify its offerings, with both mainland Chinese authorities and municipality placing pressure on the industry to get brand new approaches to derive revenue.
The theory would be to find a way for Macau to emulate a model more like that of Las vegas, nevada, where non-gaming activities are the biggest source of revenue, or at least an important contributor to the bottom line.
The problem is the fact that Macau includes a way that is long go in that respect. At the minute, casino operators make significantly less than ten percent of all of the revenues from non-gaming sources, compared to significantly more than 60 percent in Las Vegas.
And while Macau could possibly improve in this regard, at least one executive with lots of experience in Asian gaming areas states it shall never change significantly.
Betting on US Presidential Campaign Outcome for 2016: Okay Anywhere Except in America
GOP candidate Donald Trump has garnered most of the wagering from gamblers in britain looking to spot wagers regarding the 2016 US presidential election. (Image: Christopher Gregory/Getty)
The current US presidential campaign is anything but boring, that is for sure. And you will bet it continues to unfold in an way that is interesting. Well, you’ll bet anywhere except in its nation of origin, that is.
The competition for president regarding the United States won’t be decided for a 12 months, though you can easily be forgiven if you forgot it had been that far away: coverage of the race has been pretty intense this summer, even with the first primaries still months off.
However it’s not only Americans interested in the rise and fall of various applicants, as bookmakers in many countries that are overseas additionally seeing a rise in interest when it comes down to betting on the 2016 election season.
A look that is quick Oddschecker, a web site that compares betting chances at numerous various sportsbooks across the net, shows how many different companies are offering bets on both the ultimate champion of the presidential race and both the Democratic and Republican nominees. It is a market that’s certain to possess just as much twists and turns as the races by themselves, with chances already shifting significantly in just yesteryear months that are few.
Bush, Clinton Pegged as Betting Favorites
On the Republican side, for instance, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush came in while the favorite to win the nomination, with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and Florida Senator Marco Rubio also seen as likely picks. But that trio was joined by a fourth candidate that is top-tier larger-than-life personality Donald Trump, whom is beginning to be observed as a real contender, at the least in the eyes of numerous bettors.
At most sports websites that are betting Bush remains the favourite, offered at chances of about 6-4. But Trump is normally listed since the 2nd choice at 7-2 chances, while Rubio and Walker are available at around 6-1 each.
On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is still an overwhelming favorite, but at the least two other candidates are now being offered a fighting chance by oddsmakers. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is pegged as a 6-1 choice at numerous sportsbooks, while Vice President Joe Biden, who’sn’t also declared for the race as of yet, is listed at 5-1 by many websites.
British Bets on the Colonies and Trump
The united kingdom in particular has taken a strong curiosity about the 2016 presidential race. In accordance with Matthew Shaddick, mind of political odds for Ladbrokes, it’s change for a slice of these business that usually was not taken very seriously.
‘In the last, political bets were largely loss leaders for betting companies, and they had been primarily best for drumming up a little of publicity,’ Shaddick told USA Today. ‘ Now we are using it more seriously, and we expect the quantities will increase dramatically the closer we reach election time.’
Simply as coverage of the election so far has focused heavily on Trump’s campaign, so gets the betting far away. According to a spokesperson for Paddy Power, more than half of this wagers they have taken to date have actually can be found in on the business magnate and reality tv star.
Simply because Americans generally can’t bet on the election doesn’t mean that they’ren’t taking part in the gambling in some real methods, though. The Iowa Electronic Markets give Americans an appropriate way to bet in the outcome through futures contracts, and a website called PredictIt, operated by Victoria University in New Zealand, delivers a similar solution.
Meanwhile, some lawmakers in Nevada say that sportsbooks into the Silver State should have the ability to take bets on elections just as they do on a variety of sporting events.
‘Why maybe not bet in Nevada and also make some cash on it?’ State Senator Richard Segerblom (D-Las Vegas) told the Boston Globe. ‘People say it’s planning to ruin our reputation. This will be Nevada. The type of reputation are you speaking about?’