Slot percentages: 93 percent in heart of Miami-Dade

Sure, casinos won’t tell you when a slot machine will hit, but they do tell you how much they’ve been paying out.

State law requires the payback percentage to be posted on each slot floor and be updated quarterly.

And if you look around the heart of Miami, you’ll see that area is ultra-competitive. From July through December, Magic City Casino, Casino Miami and Hialeah have all paid out more than 93 percent of each slot dollar put in. Those three are the highest of the eight racetrack casinos in Miami-Dade and Broward counties. (The Seminole Tribe of Florida is not required to post its payback percentages.)

The overall average for the eight is about 92 percent.

Now, please note there’s plenty of variance from machine to machine. The $1 and $5 slots, played by high rollers, pay back about 97 percent. The penny slots can pay back as little as 85 percent.

Also note that video poker, electronic table games and local favorite Diamond Lotto return above the state average. Progressive slots, which pull a little piece of each spin to form a big jackpot, average less. The payback percentage stats are also posted on the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering’s web site.

But don’t take the percentages too seriously in choosing where to play. If it’s a casino where you have fun, feel like you’re treated well and has the food and entertainment you like, don’t let a couple of bucks determine your decision.