The midweek point shows us that it has been a fairly mixed week for online casino related stocks so far this week.
The share price of William Hill decreased on Wednesday. The value of shares was 178.10 at the start of the day and by the conclusion of business the value of shares was 176.30. This leaves the price 0.79% down from 177.70 on Tuesday and this price is 2.04% lower than the 179.90 on Monday.
This type of business was conducted on the back of average volume with the real world volume throughout the day coming in at 4.00 M whereas it had been 5.82 M on Monday and 3.06 M on Tuesday.
The PartyGaming stock price on the other hand increased on Wednesday. 270.30 is where the shares stood at the day’s start and at the close of business the share valuation stood at 271.00. That is all of 1.6% higher than the 266.60 on Tuesday September 29th and is 1.6% higher than the 266.60 on Monday September 28th
But to give a broader perspective, Cryptologic stock also dipped. The price stood at 6.07 at the beginning of the day and at the conclusion of the day 5.901 was the share price. That is 2.86 percent lower than the 6.07 from yesterday and a full 3.71% down on the the previous day’s trading.
While the numbers across the board have been quite negative in recent time, they have not been so to such an extent as to send anyone into any kind of panic at this stage.
Where there is money to be made, the lawyers are usually not far behind and the pending arrival of new French legislation to regulate their domestic online gambling market is turning into a real bonanza for the lawyers.
Firstly, Casino De France, the representative body of the traditional casino industry has a couple of cases awaiting judgment which they have undertaken against online casinos that they claim have already been operating in the French domestic market without proper licensing. They also have a number of other cases in the works that have not arrived at this advanced stage yet.
Secondly, there are a number of problems with the draft French legislation from a European Union competition law perspective. The French Government is currently trying to work with the EU to iron out these problems.
And finally, no matter what the final legislation contains it is almost inevitable that there will be some further legal challenges because of all the competing concerns that the new laws will be trying to address.
It would appear that the online casino industry in France is going to be very profitable as expected but probably for the lawyers long before the operators.
It was a nice strong and steady start to the week for 888 Holdings PLC. The stock price increased on Monday September 28th 2009 even though the trading volume was relatively modest with he real volume of trades at the close of business finishing up at 525,323.
Just to put this in a proper perspective, the volume of shares trades over the course of the day on Friday was 595,285 and the volume of shares trades on Thursday was 1.42 M
92.75 is what the shares stood at at the opening of business and by the end of the day the valuation of the shares was 93.80. This price is 0.4% up on the Friday September 25th price of 93.35 and this price is 0.9% higher than the 92.90 from last Thursday.
During the day the shares hit a low of 92.75 and during another phase the high watermark for the shares was 95.68 thus giving 1.13% difference between low and high over the course of the day.
This was a good day for the company and particularly so when looked at though the prism of the general performance of the sector last week where basically all the major players suffered losses.
As many countries have discovered over the last few years, enforcing domestic and national laws as they pertain to matters of the Internet is extremely difficult and some would suggest impossible.
More specifically, the area of online casino legislation illustrates this particular problem perfectly. Governments have always liked to control all forms of gambling. The combination of the immense profitability and potential for social harm if left unregulated means that the traditional approach to this area has been one of prohibition and heavy regulation.
The core of the difficulty is that with the dawn of the Internet, governments have attempted to adopt their traditional approach online as well. The border-less element of the Internet and the differing laws in different countries has created all sorts of difficulties.
Ultimately, the only long lasting solution is a set of international laws and regulations that govern online gambling but we may be waiting for some time for those as individual states continue to grapple with trying to impose old standards to a new medium.
There has been a lot of talk recently about the possibility of a lifting of the online gambling ban in the U.S.
Most of this talk has been of a very positive nature and for the most part much of the speculation is at least based on sound logic.
Barney Frank’s bill has been garnering support from some unusual sources due to the nature and scale of the global economic downturn.
Unfortunately, all of this positive talk seems to be overlooking one of the main reasons the ban was introduced in the first place.
The traditional casino industry has very powerful lobbyists working its behalf in Washington ans there is no doubt that they would have had a hand in pushing for the introduction of the 2006 ban.
The global economic downturn has hit the lad based casinos extremely hard. One of the main factors here is consumers are simply not traveling in t he same quantities at the moment. Las Vegas and Atlantic City casinos have been hit very hard by this.
So while all the talk about a lifting of the ban is very positive and that very thing may well happen soon, it’s also important to remember that there are still powerful lobby groups out there that are effective and completely opposed to any opening up of online gambling.
It was a pretty negative week all round for the online casino industry on the markets as we saw steadily declining numbers across the whole sector for most of the week. To illustrate, here are some of the numbers for a sample of the main industry names for Friday September 25th 2009.
William Hill lost ground on Friday to the tune of 3.12%. The price was 187.50 at the opening of business and 182.30 is what the shares stood at by the closing bell.
This was based on a higher than average volume of 6.40 M where the volume upon conclusion of trading on Thursday had settled at 3.50 M and on Wednesday settled at 4.16 M.
Friday also saw a dip in the share price of Cryptologic. At the opening of trading 6.32 was the value of shares and 6.31 was the share valuation by the closing bell . That price is 1.26 percent down on the Thursday price of 6.39 and is 1.66% lower than the Wednesday when the shares had rallied somewhat from a slow start to the week.
One of the few better performing shares in the sector on Friday was PartyGaming. 265.20 was the standing of the shares at the start of the day and by the conclusion of business 267.60 was the share price . That is all of 0.9% higher than the 265.10 on Thursday but still 2.35% down from 273.90 on Wednesday based on a volume for the day of 348,638.
It has not been the easiest of weeks for the sector and hopefully when trading begins again on Monday, some healthier news will emerge.