November 5, 2010       101105

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Compiled by Al Rogers

Harrah’s loses $164.8 million in third quarter

Harrah's Entertainment Inc. of Las Vegas today posted a third quarter loss as costs expanded and customers spent less on the Las Vegas Strip and around the country.

Harrah’s to lay off 200 Tunica workers

Citing a continuing decline in the casino industry, Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. is cutting its Tunica work force by 5 percent and outsourcing the entire housekeeping staff at its Horseshoe Casino & Hotel property.

Thanks to Green Chip member bigplayer for providing the above link.

Harrah’s Bosses Put Squeeze on Employees to Vote in Pro-Reid Effort

LAS VEGAS - Executives at the casino giant Harrah’s pushed company employees to vote early in an all-out effort to help the Harry Reid campaign, according to internal emails obtained by Battle ‘10.

Harrah’s Laughlin found liable in fatal 2002 casino brawl

LAS VEGAS - A jury has found Harrah's Laughlin liable for injuries sustained by bystanders when a fight broke out among rival biker gangs at the hotel-casino in 2002, killing three people.

Harrah's prices IPO in $15-$17 range

Harrah's Entertainment is hoping to raise $610.9 million in an initial public offering this month and will change its corporate name to Caesars Entertainment.

Harrah’s deal to bring digital advertising to ‘high-traffic’ areas

Harrah's Entertainment Inc. of Las Vegas has plenty of walls on and in its casinos and hotel rooms -- and a deal announced today will see more digital advertising displays on those walls.

Man pleads guilty to defrauding MGM Grand

A man indicted by a federal grand jury for using a false identity to defraud the MGM Grand resort pleaded guilty today to one count of fraud and related activity, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation officials announced.   Newsletter editor's note:  The case docket reveals the MGM in no way suffered as a "victim."  It was an asset forfeiture case involving alternate names used for CTR's. The case may be discussed in more detail on Green Chip.

Man assaulted and robbed at A.C. casino

ATLANTIC CITY -- A man is recovery tonight after he was assaulted and robbed early Tuesday morning in a Trump Taj Mahal elevator.

Double Standards in Casinos - No Way (Yes Way)

For those who work in the casino business, you may or may not have read the fine print in your job description. It goes something like this: You will at all times adhere to the company's code of conduct and will take immediate remedial action if you recognize a potential compromise to game protection and patron safety. Sure, it's hard to find it in the carefully crafted cut & pastes from the legal and HR departments. It's probably located just above the line that says: If the customer's a high roller or hangs out with one - Fuggedabout the last line.

Bad Bet: Mohegan Sun Casino Cuts Losses on 2 Years of Terrible Ads

Folks on the East Coast will rejoice at the news that the Mohegan Sun casino in Connecticut has put its ad account into a competitive bidding review: It might bring to an end some of the worst casino advertising ever seen. Many a TV viewer has wrinkled her nose and made a “WTF?” face at the sudden appearance of a Mohegan commercial.

Management company reports financial troubles at Hard Rock ...

LAS VEGAS - Problems with meeting debt obligations are mounting at the 1,500-room Hard Rock hotel-casino in Las Vegas, even as the property is beginning to see improvements in the Las Vegas market, its management company reported today.

... Cantor to handle sports wagering for Hard Rock

Cantor Gaming has reached an agreement with the Hard Rock Hotel to build and operate the property's sports book, the companies announced Monday. The location will be Cantor's third facility in the region. The company owns and operates a Cantor Race and Sports Book at M Resort and the Tropicana.

Reid re-election and referendum approvals please gaming leaders

Consensus is that Nevada slot machine manufacturers and the Silver State's casino industry were the big winners in the 2010 midterm elections.

Saying no to online gambling will cost N.S., gaming head says

Staying out of online gambling will mean less money for the province, and the Nova Scotia Gaming Corp. will try to estimate how much, says the Crown agency's boss.

Foxwoods Development partners online gambling site

Foxwoods Development Co., the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe's St. Louis-based development arm, plans to develop an Internet gambling site in Europe in a partnership with Goodson Gaming, whose president, Jonathan Goodson, produced such hit television game shows as "The Price is Right" and "Family Feud."

US Poker Lobby Shuffles Deck After Democratic Defeats

The online poker lobby on Capitol Hill is set to switch its attention to the United States Senate after sweeping Democratic losses that will see the industry’s chief advocate to date, Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts, demoted from his position of influence in a key House committee.

New casino opening catches many off guard -- Avoidance of approval process could reverberate

A new casino that opened quickly in northern Michigan is raising questions about state and federal authority to regulate Indian gaming.

MGM: Las Vegas market stabilizing, but mid-tier resorts ‘challenged’

MGM Resorts International expects revenue to grow from its CityCenter joint venture and its high-end hotels elsewhere on the Las Vegas Strip -- but lower-end properties remain challenged by recessionary pressures and the oversupply of hotel rooms in the city, executives said today.

Siena Hotel Casino in Reno going up for auction Nov. 10

The auction of the Siena Hotel Casino in downtown Reno will take place next week in a Reno courtroom, where a national investment banking firm will try to sell the downtown resort that recently closed after a long string of financial problems.

Windsor casino winner might keep part of winnings after seizure

DETROIT -  A man who won big at Caesars Windsor casino, only to lose his money to federal agents after he tried to re-enter the United States on Monday without properly declaring his winnings, may be in luck after all. Federal officials said this afternoon that the Birmingham high-roller could get most of his $19,901 winnings back since he obtained the cash legally.

Parx unveils 24-table poker room

PHILADELPHIA - Parx, Pennsylvania's most profitable casino, unveiled its 24-table poker room Wednesday in the building next door that once housed the old PhillyPark casino.

MGM Resorts distances itself from bankrupt MGM Studios

The worldwide value of MGM Resorts International's brands was highlighted today when the company moved to clarify for investors, customers and vendors -- particularly those overseas -- that it is not affiliated with the bankrupt MGM Studios.

Westin Casuarina faces hardships amid economic downturn

The owner of the Westin Casuarina Hotel, Casino & Spa in Las Vegas isn’t commenting on how the property is performing during the recession, but real estate watchers say the 826-room property may face foreclosure.

Beyond the headlines, real LV story is complex

I received an e-mail for a U.S.-based correspondent for a respected foreign publication who wanted to know whether the rumors were true, and that Las Vegas would soon be closed because of the poor state of the economy.

Tropicana employee fired over anonymous Web postings files wrongful-termination suit

ATLANTIC CITY — Kevin McHugh was brought into the corporate offices of Tropicana Casino and Resort in August 2009 and confronted with copies of anonymous online postings that denounced the gaming hall's management. A few days later, the table games pit boss was out of a job, his 26-year career at Tropicana abruptly over.

Hoopla over Hula-Hoops soon over -- Officials close to accord on conduct for Fremont Street

An accord is close on new rules for street performers and the like at the Fremont Street Experience, and the city of Las Vegas probably will not ban Hula-Hoops after all.

Gamblers winning big at Borgata’s gaming tables and it's costing the casino millions of dollars

ATLANTIC CITY — Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa’s gamblers have been incredibly lucky at the gaming tables. That’s good for them, but bad for Borgata. Borgata’s luck has been so poor lately that it has cost Atlantic City’s top-grossing casino millions of dollars in revenue and prompted some intriguing speculation. One gaming analyst wondered about the possibility of a cheating ring.

Thanks to Green Chip member Mike Keno for providing the above link.

Wynn Las Vegas dealers OK resort’s first labor contract

More than three years after voting for union representation, Wynn Las Vegas dealers last week voted 258 to 65 to approve the resort’s first-ever labor contract for table games dealers. About 60 percent of Wynn's 500-plus full-time dealers cast votes, union representatives said.

Q&A: Larry D. Woolf, CEO of the Navegante Group

Like most gaming executives, Navegante Group CEO Larry D. Woolf started his education on the front lines, working as a valet-parking attendant, baggage handler and doorman in Atlantic City. He worked his way through the ranks and became a credit and marketing host at MGM Grand, taking over as CEO for Navegante, a casino management and consulting company his father, Larry J. Woolf, founded.

The Bear Growls

Long-time Las Vegas-based advantage player, casino critic, and frequent contributor LVBear offers his opinions on things that sometimes go wrong in the world of casinos.  Current and past growls can be read and comments posted at LVBear's website,

The Color of Blackjack  focuses on KO count

The Color of Blackjack
focuses on the KO counting system. It is 68 pages, and features many full-color charts.

Ken Smith, longtime professional blackjack player and author, says:

I've known Daniel Dravot for quite a few years now. He's a successful and experienced pro player. He's been on the road playing blackjack all over the country for many years and gambling has long been his sole source of income. What I did not know was that he uses KO as his count system. That was surprising to me. Even though I have long recommended KO to new players, I always thought there was a small performance penalty to pay for the simplicity and convenience of KO. The Color of Blackjack describes his addition to KO which is a workable way to gain some of the advantage you could have with TKO (True-Counted KO).

George C, longtime professional blackjack player and author, says:

I've known Daniel Dravot for quite some time. He not only talks the talk but walks the walk. He's made a nice haul over the last few years and it's outlined in the book.

The price is $24.95 plus shipping (plus sales tax if sent to a Nevada address).  Green Chip members receive a ten percent discount.  Order The Color of Blackjack

Beat the Players - Casinos, Cops and the Game Inside the Game  by Bob Nersesian

This book should be read by everyone who sets foot in a casino: average casino patrons, skilled players, casino employees, and anyone else. It should be required reading for police officers, regulators, other public officials, and attorneys who may represent any of the aforementioned. Beat the Players was the subject of a feature in USA Today.

Bob Nersesian is an attorney who represents victims of casino wrongdoing against patrons. In an enjoyable writing style, he takes a look at the often too-cozy relationship between casinos, police, and regulators. He discusses specific cases and dispenses sound, practical advice that patrons, casinos and public officials would be wise to heed. Cases discussed are from Nevada and other jurisdictions.

Chapters include: Your Money or Your Liberty; Scary Cop Statements; They'll Take Your Liberty Anyway; Gaming Agents Speak; The Take of the State; Rules for Casino Patrons; Gambling at the Legal Limits; Cops Hate Card Counters; Griffin Investigations; Casinos Cheat With Impunity; A Judicial and Government Overlay; Finding a Nickel Brings Trouble; Names and Aliases; The Security Office and Surveillance Functions, and Casinos and Cops.

Appendices include Nevada Cheating and Detention Laws with Commentary; Other Nevada Gaming Laws of Interest; Gaming Cases of Interest, and Nevada Gaming Regulations with Commentary.

The 320-page book includes a bibliography and an index.

The price is $19.95 plus shipping (plus sales tax if sent to a Nevada address). Green Chip members get their normal 10% discount      .Order Beat the Players.  Blackjack, Poker, Sports, other casino-related free message board and Green Chip membership

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Current Blackjack News

On the 1st and 2nd of every month, a couple dozen Pi Yee Press reporters visit casinos around the United States to check on the blackjack rules and playing conditions. Five of those reporters split up Las Vegas and visit every casino in town. Any changes in rules and playing conditions that they find, they email to the CBJN editor, who compiles them into a newsletter that is published late in the afternoon on the 3rd. That report is available as a single issue, your choice of e-mail or regular mail. The price of a single issue is $13 for electronic or $16 for regular mail.  Sample issue of  Current Blackjack News.

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