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Penn National a buyer in world of sellers

Morgan Joseph gaming analyst Justin Sebastiano is now a member of the Penn National Gaming fan club. As gaming companies falter, Penn National is viewed by most Wall Street researchers as an industry anomaly, a casino operator with a strong balance...

Welcome to Las Vegas Mr. Leven

If Conan O’Brien needs writers when he moves to the “The Tonight Show,” the Review-Journal’s business staff stands ready. The one-liners were flying Monday when it was announced that Michael Levin would be taking over as president of Las Vegas Sands...

Ruffin strikes oil

Talk about having the “Midas Touch,” Phil Ruffin seems to make money just by doing nothing. Ruffin, the former New Frontier owner who sold his $167 million hotel-casino investment for $1.2 billion nine years later, is buying the Treasure Island from...

Some final observations from the M Resort

M Resort officials went all out for the $1 billion casino’s grand opening celebration Sunday night. Some of the 4,000 VIP guests even stuck around after the doors opened at 10 p.m. for the general public and were the first players gambling at the...

Creepy or clever? You be the judge

A billboard for MGM Mirage’s MGM Grand Detroit has caused a stir in the Motor City. The billboard depicts a huge pair of golden eyes on a black background, with a small golden silhouette of the company’s signature lion on the sign's upper right-hand...

Jindal might want to watch his words

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal might want to be a little more careful about how he chooses his words. He doesn't want to set off fireworks with some of his state's biggest tax producers. Jindal delivered the nationally televised Republican response...

Wynn facing a different challenge

Hotel rates along the Strip have been slashed to levels not seen since the 1980s just to get customers into the buildings. But that’s just one step. Getting those customers to spend money is another issue. That sums up Wall Street’s current attitude...

Gale leaving control board post

The Gaming Control Board’s audit division chief since 1987 is hanging up his calculator. Gregg Gale, a 30-year employee of the agency, will retire in March. Lynda Hartzell, a deputy chief in the audit division assigned to the board’s Las Vegas...

A win for poker players in South Carolina

Online poker players have long argued the card game, especially Texas Hold’em, is one of skill and not a game of chance. That argument, they believe, exempts poker from the current federal ban on Internet wagering. A judge in South Carolina last...

Hotel reservations begin at CityCenter

MGM Mirage will begin accepting hotel reservations Monday morning for rooms at two of the $9.1 billion CityCenter’s properties, the Vdara hotel and condominium tower, and Aria, the project’s centerpiece hotel-casino. Vadara, a non-gaming resort,...

Boyd numbers worry analysts

Boyd Gaming Corp. will release its fourth-quarter earnings next Thursday, but Wall Street isn’t waiting for the numbers to offer opinions. Deutsche Bank gaming analyst Andrew Zarnett downgraded his recommendation on Boyd Gaming’s high yield bonds to...

iPhone program creator worried

Maybe Travis Yates has watched a few too many American gangster movies. Yates is the Australian software designer who created a blackjack card-counting application for the iPhone. Sales have soared in the past week since the Nevada Gaming Control...

Adelson, LVCVA on the same page

This may be the first and only time we’ve seen representatives of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman Sheldon Adelson talking from the same playbook. In an interview with Bloomberg News Service, Adelson...