There are currently twelve Pennsylvania casinos in the state with a 13th on the way. All PA casinos are likely to see windfalls after Pennsylvania voted to expand gambling. And many of these casinos are also likely to offer some form of online gambling when the market goes live, sometime in the middle of 2018.
Two months after the gambling expansion package was passed there are some companies already reaping the benefits of the passage of the bill with some casino stocks up 20% since the news.
Granted, 2018 turned out to be a successful year for the entire stock market with gains of the S&P 500 at 18.5% over the year and 3.63% since Pennsylvania passed its gambling expansion. Without a doubt, some of these gains can be attributed to the broader market regardless of Pennsylvania expanding gambling, but gains have been consistently good throughout 2017 as well and in most cases far exceed the general stock market.
When taking a look at the gains since November 1st, it’s also worth noting that some of the gains were clearly priced into the stocks prior to the passage of the bill due to the view that the bill had broad support and was expected to eventually pass.
Below is a breakdown for how these companies fared during 2017 and perhaps some of the main companies you should be looking at if you want to invest in the burgeoning PA online gambling market.
|Pennsylvania Publicly Traded Casino Companies|
|Company||Ticker||Casino||Market Cap||2017 Close Price||Gain Since Nov 1st||Gain During 2017|
|Penn National Gaming||PENN||Hollywood Casino||2.85 B||31.33||20.08%||122.19%|
|Eldorado Resorts||ERI||Presque Isle Downs & Casino||2.54 B||33.15||-1.25%||94.42%|
|Boyd Gaming||BYD||Valley Forge||3.95 B||35.05||16.68%||71.72%|
|Churchill Downs||CHDN||Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs||3.59 B||232.7||11.40%||56.27%|
|Caesars Entertainment||CZR||Harrah's Philadelphia||8.9 B||12.95||-2.42%||52.40%|
|Las Vegas Sands||LVS||Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem||54.93 B||69.49||8.80%||30.30%|
|Gaming and Leisure Properties||GLPI||The Meadows Racetrack and Casino||7.87 B||37.00||1.25%||20.16%|
Pennsylvania online casino stock prices
Let’s take a look at the best performing public companies associated with Pennsylvania casinos.
Penn National Gaming (trades as PENN on Nasdaq): The operator of Hollywood Casino, PENN closed at 31.33 on Friday with a stock that more than doubled over 2018. PENN has also gained more than any other PA casino, up from 26.09 per share on October 31st. In the middle of December, Penn National acquired Pinnacle Entertainment for a price tag of $2.8 billion dollars.
Caesars Entertainment (CZR): The owner of Harrah’s finished off the year at a price of 12.65 per share. The company has struggled in recent years, but the stock has been up almost 50% since the start of 2017 when it began the year at 8.30 per year. Since October 31st, the price of CZR has mostly been flat closing below where it is now at 12.95.
Gaming and Leisure Properties (GLPI on Nasdaq): The owner of The Meadows Racetrack and Casino closed out the year with a stock price of 37.00. The company began the year with a stock price of 30.79, a 20% increase for 2017. The stock has mostly been flat since October 31st, which closed that day at 36.54
Churchill Downs Inc. (CHDN on Nasdaq): The owner of Downs Racing, which operates Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, traded at a price of 232.70 on Friday. The stock was at 208.50 on October 31st and began the year at 148.69 for a gain of an impressive 56.27%.
Eldorado Resorts (ERI on Nasdaq): Eldorado Resorts is the owner of Presque Isle Downs & Casino and Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin. The stock price of ERI closed at 33.15 on Friday, up from 25.70 since October 31st. The stock began the year at 17.05.
Las Vegas Sands (LVS on the New York Stock Exchange): LVS, which owns Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem closed at 69.49 on Friday. Although they will likely not be a player in the online market, the company is expected to benefit from broader expansion in the state. LVS began the yearyear trading at 53.33 and 63.38 on October 31st.
Boyd Gaming (BYD): Boyd Gaming purchased Valley Forge casino last month in an attempt to take part in the expanding Pennsylvania gambling market. Shareholders have liked the news, closing at 35.05 up from 20.41 since the start of the year and 29.23 since October 31st.
European gambling companies
In addition to these local stocks, European gambling companies are likely to be involved in the market as software providers. Investors can look at companies such as Stars Group (the owner of PokerStars), GVC Holdings (partypoker, bwin) and 888 Holdings (888).
Each of these brands are in at least one regulated market in the United States and should be a beneficiary if/when further gambling expansion occurs in other states.