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Two weeks on from the unsealing of shock US federal indictments against 11 defendants associated with major online poker firms the reverberations are still being felt by the global industry.
In the latest statistics presented by the independent online poker monitor Pokerscout, it appears that player numbers globally have declined by a worrying 22% since the indictments, generating fears that the US situation could have a major and more permanent dampening effect on the popularity of international poker.
This week Pokerscout assessed the cumulative damage to the sites named in the indictments, reporting that the net effect over the past two weeks has been a 28% decrease in Pokerstars traffic; a 35% decline in Full Tilt players; and a whopping 65% dive in traffic to the Cereus network, where Absolute Poker and UBPoker operate.
This has meant that Cereus has dropped from seventh to twentieth in the Pokerscout rankings, clearing the way for 888Poker to move up from eleventh to eighth position, and US-friendly Bodog Poker to move up to twenty-second on the list, with traffic up by 32%.
Cake Poker - also US-friendly - numbers indicate a rise in traffic of 30%.
The Merge network appears to be the biggest winner among the American-friendly sites involved in the crisis, moving up to 12th on the Pokerscout rankings by increasing its traffic by 61%.
Pokerscout gives a sense of perspective in revealing that the sites impacted by the indictments have lost approaching 16,000 cash game players in the past two weeks. It is worrying to note that of these, only around 950 appear to have converted to other US-facing sites.
Source: InfoPowa News