LAS VEGAS, Jan. 09, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The AGEM Index experienced significant gains for the fourth month in a row during December 2017. The composite index closed the month at 516.79 points, a gain of 24.14 points, or 4.90 percent, when compared to November 2017. The AGEM Index reported a year-over-year increase for the 27th consecutive month and has climbed 208.64 points, or 67.71 percent, since November 2016.
During the latest period, seven of the 12 global gaming equipment manufacturers reported month-to-month increases in stock price. Five manufacturers reported decreases in stock price during the month, with all manufacturers posting single-digit increases and declines.
The three broader stock market indexes produced positive results in December. The S&P 500 reported a month-to-month increase of 0.98 percent to 2,673.61. The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 1.84 percent to 24,719.22, while the NASDAQ increased 0.43 percent during the period to 6,903.39.
Selected positive contributors to the December 2017 AGEM Index included the following:
- Aristocrat Leisure Limited (ASX:ALL) contributed 20.60 points due to a 9.22 percent increase in stock price to AU$23.70.
- Konami Corp. (TYO:9766) reported a 4.55 percent increase in stock price to ¥6,200 and contributed 4.48 points.
- Crane Co. (CR) contributed 3.26 points due to a 4.51 percent increase in stock price to $89.22.
Selected negative contributors included the following:
- With its stock price falling 3.56 percent to $26.51, International Game Technology PLC (IGT) contributed negative 2.61 points.
- Scientific Games Corporation (SGMS) reported a 2.56 percent decrease in stock price to $51.30, contributing negative 1.61 points.
Several gaming manufacturers released quarterly and yearly financial reports in the past two months. Selected reports are outlined below.
Ainsworth Game Technology (ASX:AGI) reported annual profits after tax for fiscal year 2017 of AU$37.9 million, a 32 percent year-over-year decline. A large portion of the decline was attributable to unfavorable currency exchange of negative AU$10.5 million in fiscal year 2017 compared to a favorable positive AU$4.7 million in the prior period. Earnings per share for fiscal year 2017 were AU$0.12 per share, down from AU$0.17 per share in the prior period.
Galaxy Gaming (GLXZ) released its third quarter results for 2017, reporting a 20 percent year-over-year increase in gross revenue that was primarily attributable to a focus on the company’s premium games segment. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) decreased by 39.7 percent from the same period in the prior year. This decline was mostly attributable to increased selling, general and administrative expenses and one-time settlement income in the same period of the prior year.
International Game Technology PLC (IGT) reported an operating loss of $556 million in the third quarter of 2017. This loss was due to a non-cash, non-tax-deductible impairment charge of $714 million to write down the carrying value of the North America Gaming and Interactive reporting unit to fair value. Adjusted EBITDA remained virtually flat compared to the third quarter of last year, falling by 0.3 percent to $428.5 million. Management provided an outlook of $1,640 million to $1,680 million in adjusted EBITDA for the entirety of 2017.
Scientific Games Corporation (SGMS) reported a 6.8 percent year-over-year increase in revenue for the third quarter of 2017, with over half of the increase attributable to its interactive segment. The segment’s success reflects the popularity of its established, acquired and recently launched apps. The third quarter saw average daily revenue per average daily active user increasing by 45.2 percent over the same period in the prior year. The company also amended a credit agreement in August 2017 extending the maturity and reducing applicable interest on $3.3 billion of outstanding debt.
TransAct Technologies (TACT) reported earnings per share of $0.24 for the third quarter of 2017, doubling earnings per share from the same period in the prior year. The improvement was driven by a combination of increased sales in the restaurant solutions and services group segments and decreased cost of sales attributable to a different product mix than the same period in the prior year.
The AGEM Index
The Association of Gaming Equipment Manufacturers (AGEM) produces the monthly AGEM Index that comprises 13 global gaming suppliers throughout the world. A total of 8 suppliers are based in the United States and are listed on the NYSE, Nasdaq or OTC market, while two trade on the Australian exchange, one supplier trades on the Athens exchange, one on the Tokyo exchange, and another trades on the Taiwan OTC exchange. The index is computed based on the month-end stock price (adjusted for dividends and splits) of each company and weighted based on approximation of market capitalization. Market capitalizations for manufacturers trading on foreign exchanges have been converted to US dollar-equivalents as of month-end for comparability purposes. The AGEM Index is based on a 100-point value as of January 2005.