Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Best of Vin Narayanan
President Bush signed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Act into law today. The measure, which was attached to a ports security bill, bans American banks and credit card companies from completing transactions with Internet gambling companies.
The Associated Press reports Bush focused on security issues at today's signing ceremony and did not mention Internet gambling. (Related story: Legal analysis)
In response to the bill's passing, more than 250 sites – including six from Casino City's Top 10 most popular sites – have already announced that they will stop accepting bets from U.S.-based players. And on Thursday, Sportingbet sold its U.S.-facing businesses to a company based in Antigua for $1 and the assumption of $13.2 million in debt.
Publicly-held casinos have the led the exodus out of the U.S. market. Industry giants PartyGaming – parent company of PartyPoker – and 888 announced last week that they would stop accepting American bets when Bush signed the law. PartyGaming's stock has lost almost 75% of its value in the last two weeks. 888's share price has plummeted by more than 50% over the same period. Both companies drew most of their revenue from the $6 billion U.S. market. (Related story: PartyPoker mucks U.S. hand)
But American gamers will find that most privately-held casinos will still take their bets. Bodog, Golden Palace and VIP -- all in Casino City's Top 10 most popular sites – have announced their commitment to the U.S. market.
And about 85% of the online casinos will continue to take American bets, according to a Casino City analysis.