Penny for Your Slots?

Revenue from penny slots more than doubles in Illinois

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images / Tim Boyle
    Penny slots revenue in Illinois in 2006 was only around 6 percent of casino revenue. But last year, it grew to nearly 12 percent. In February this year, it was around 15 percent.

    Gamblers in Illinois and elsewhere may be cutting back like other consumers, but one thing they're not doing is pinching pennies.

    Their spending on penny gambling machines produced about one-fourth of all slot machine revenue in Nevada last year. In Missouri, more than half of all casino revenue came from penny slots.

    Penny slots revenue in Illinois in 2006 was only around 6 percent of casino revenue. But last year, it grew to nearly 12 percent. In February this year, it was around 15 percent.

    To play penny slots, gamblers place electronic bets in one- or two-cent increments. The machines allow wagers anywhere from one penny to $10 or more per spin.

    Gamblers feed the machines and any winnings are paid out with a paper ticket that can be redeemed at a cashier's cage or money machine or used to place more bets.