|Gaming stocks fell for the second consecutive session this morning, as Harrah’s was downgraded and a report from regulators showed the Nevada slot machine business and casino action remained soft in August. |
Harrah's Entertainment Inc. shares led this morning's decline, falling 8 percent after analyst Michael Reitbrock of Salomon Smith Barney downgraded the stock to 'in-line' from 'outperform.' He also lowered his 12-month price target of Harrah's stock to $52 a share from $58.
Reitbrock said his downgrade reflected concerns about consumer spending. He also cited very high investor expectations for Harrah's stock and growing competition.
Big Las Vegas competitors to Harrah's also fell this morning, with Park Place Entertainment Corp. off 3 percent, MGM MIRAGE down .76 percent, Station Casinos Inc. down 3.58 percent and Mandalay Resort Group down 4.79 percent.
Stocks of all the big Las Vegas-based casino operators also fell earlier this week over concerns about Las Vegas room rates and tougher competition among riverboat casino operators.