NEW YORK – Harrah's Entertainment Inc. (HET), the world's biggest casino operator, on Thursday said its third-quarter profit rose 42 percent thanks to additional revenue from recently acquired Caesars Entertainment (search).
Las Vegas-based Harrah's (search) posted net income of $169 million, compared with $118.8 million a year earlier.
Its diluted earnings per share fell, however, to 91 cents from $1.06, as the company issued 67 million shares in connection with the Caesars acquisition in June.
Excluding special items, the company earned $1.05 a share, compared with the average analyst forecast of $1.02 per share, as compiled by Reuters Estimates.
Total revenue rose 78.2 percent to $2.3 billion, while same-store revenue edged up 3.8 percent.
Harrah's said revenue in southern Nevada rose 10.2 percent; Atlantic City (search) was up 6.4 percent; and the north-central region, which includes Midwestern states like Indiana and Illinois, rose 2.2 percent.
But revenue in hurricane-ravaged Louisiana and Mississippi fell 13.3 percent.
The totals do not include contributions from Caesars properties or discontinued operations, but they do include revenue from casinos added through the company's July 2004 acquisition of Horseshoe Gaming.
The Harrah's casino in downtown New Orleans suffered flood damage and the company said earlier this month it did not know when it would reopen.
The company's barge casinos in Gulfport and Biloxi, Mississippi, were destroyed by Katrina and its casino in Lake Charles, Louisiana, was badly damaged by Rita in September.
Shares of Harrah's have fallen about 23 percent from their early-August peak as investors fret about hurricane costs as well as the impact of higher fuel prices and interest rates on consumer spending habits.