New Jersey Internet Gambling Accounts Reach 150,000

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Associated Press
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New Jersey Internet Gambling Accounts Reach 150,000

ATLANTIC CITY — (Associated Press) - The number of Internet gambling accounts created in New Jersey continues to grow and is nearing 150,000.

New Jersey online gambling was authorized last year to give a boost to Atlantic City’s struggling casino industry, which has been beset by increasing competition for the past seven years. It began with a five-day trial period on Nov. 21 and launched publicly on Nov. 25.

As of Monday, 148,487 accounts had been created, though the state’s Gaming Enforcement Division notes that individuals often create separate accounts on more than one site.

The state will issue its first report next week on Internet gambling revenue won by the casinos.

Seven casinos are offering online gambling: Golden Nugget, Borgata, Tropicana, Trump Plaza, Trump Taj Mahal, Caesars and Bally’s.

Resorts also received approval to offer Internet gambling. But its online partner, PokerStars, has been suspended from offering gambling in New Jersey for two years because of an indictment against its founder.

State gambling regulators said PokerStars can reapply for approval before then if its circumstances change enough to bring it into compliance with New Jersey regulations.

Online betting marks the biggest expansion of gambling in New Jersey since the first Atlantic City casino opened in 1978. The state lets gamblers play any of the games offered in its 12 casinos including card games and slots, but online poker has proven especially popular in the early going.

New Jersey is the third state to offer Internet gambling, after Nevada and Delaware.

It remains to be seen if the $200 million to $300 million that Wall Street analysts predict Internet gambling may bring in over its first year will be new business, or whether it will simply cannibalize walk-in business at the brick-and-mortar casinos.

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