Caesar (CZR) IPO Filing Signals Legalization of Internet Poker Closer than Ever

November 17, 2011 10:03 AM EST
Casinos are getting more bullish on the possibility of online gaming in the U.S. becoming a reality.

Although a $531 million IPO was scrapped last year, Caesar's recently filed an IPO for $50 million of its common stock. The move might be in anticipation of a bill being introduced in the Senate proposing to legalize online poker, sources have said.

The bill, according to the NY Post, will be proposed by the end of the session, and could be approved sometime in 2012.

Three other key moves the Post notes are:
  • The Senate Indian Affairs Committee (tribes are generally against legalization), which will hold a hearing on online poker Thursday;

  • MGM Resorts (NYSE: MGM) and Boyd Gaming (NYSE: BYD), which on Oct. 31 separately announced agreements with bwin.party digital entertainment to develop online poker sites; and

  • Donald Trump, who teamed with Avenue Capital late last month to launch an online poker site.
The timing for the bill might have never been better, as more and more consumers are becoming more comfortable with making financial transactions online.

Also, who wants to reduce their deficit...? The U.S. And since folks love gambling, it would be a constant revenue stream to cut that margin. Morgan Stanley recently estimated online poker would bring in about $14 billion annually, with $3.5 billion in tax revenue. Though it doesn't sound like much, anything is better than nothing.

Of course, gambling too much leads to other risks, like losing a home, getting too far in debt, and bankruptcy. So basically, the normal course of business for the U.S.


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