Companies in Online Gambling Industry See their Shares Rise

Recently, companies in the online gambling industry saw their shares rise. A key reason for this was a statement released by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) that the Wire Act – which was used as the basis for banning online casino games like poker – applied only to gambling products like sports betting. Hot on the heels of this announcement, several states took steps to push for the legalization of online gambling real money options.

If a law and regulatory measures are set in place for online gambling, companies offering these products (both online and offline) will be able to accept players in the US legally. Companies that are likely to benefit the most are those that had started readying for the time when the gambling law becomes favorable for them. Also, online operators who are affiliated or have commercial relationships with land-based casino companies stand to benefit quite a lot.

888 Holding Shares Increase by 9%

One among these companies is 888 Holdings, which saw its shares rise by 9%. The online gambling company, which has a number of skill, poker and casino websites, is associated with Caesars Entertainment, the largest casino company in the world. Bwin.party, an online gambling group that is listed on the London Stock Exchange, had shares rise by 23%. Confidence in the group is quite high owing to its connection with MGM Resorts and Boyd Gaming, two operators in Las Vegas with which it entered joint ventures.

DoJ Reassessed Wire Act after Requests from New York and Illinois

The DoJ took the step to reassess the Wire Act which was passed in 1961, when New York and Illinois enquired whether they could sell online lottery tickets to players in their borders. In response to the inquiry, the assistant attorney general stated that the Wire Act permits the sale of the tickets as betting on them does not involve contests or events in sports.

Based on its previous interpretation of the law, the DoJ has indicted a number of top online poker rooms like PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker. Some of the charges brought against them were money laundering and fraud. With the latest interpretation of the Wire Act, legalization of online poker at the state level is likely to be possible in the near future.

Though the latest memorandum does not state that online gambling is legal, or that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) – another law which banned online gambling – has been revoked, it can go a long way in speeding up the legalization on online gambling within states.

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