During September, the Las Vegas Strip was able to generate impressive revenue as it increased the state’s overall monthly gambling revenue, according to the Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB), Nevada’s gaming regulatory body.
Strip’s licensed casinos as main revenue generators:
The 60 officially licensed casinos located on the Strip managed to earn $741.2 million from players during the aforementioned month, increasing the state’s capex to roughly $1.27 billion, which represents a 1.7% growth over 2022 and an “all-time” record compared to any previous Septembers. Additionally, certain collected income for the Strip increased by only 6.9% compared to the previous year, which contrasts with the decrease that occurred in many of Nevada’s other regulated markets.
When it comes to these other markets, the regulated market in Laughlin also performed strongly, with an increase of 6.4% to $41.6 million, but other Southern Nevada markets were not so lucky. Specifically, the Boulder Strip, Mesquite, downtown Las Vegas and north Las Vegas experienced decreases of up to 9.4%.
Clark County gaming facilities also played a role as a significant revenue generator:
In the 1q of the 2023-2024 fiscal year, statewide profit rose 2.9% to $3.9 billion, helped by 219 legalized gaming facilities in Clark County. Additionally, their overall accumulated income rose by 3.6% to $3.3 billion. As for the Strip, it saw profits rise of 5.5% to $2.2 billion for the period spanning July, August and September.
Commenting on the revenue generated for the said month which has already surpassed pre-pandemic levels, the Control Board’s senior economic analyst who crunches the gaming figures, Michael Lawton, commented: “Nevada continued to record gaming win amounts in excess of pre-pandemic levels this month. Statewide total win was 20.1 percent or $212.3 million over September 2019. This month also represented the 31st consecutive month that the state has recorded at least $1 billion in monthly gaming win. Special events in Las Vegas continued to boost casino play.” He also pointed out: ” “Weekends with Adele” returned to the Colosseum at Caesars Palace all month and Lady Gaga performed at Dolby Live inside the Park MGM Sept 2-10 and Sept. 28-30.”
Player interest in table games and baccarat higher than last year:
When it comes to table games and baccarat in particular, the aforementioned Nevada casinos experienced more player interest compared to 2022, further leading to more money being made regardless of a smaller drop in stakes.
As for tabletop gaming income, it was $456 million, representing a 16.6% growth over 2022, while the decline was down 4.4% to $2.9 billion. Game retention was 15.84% compared to 12.97% the previous year. The same data applies for baccarat, according to the official report.
Next is the aforementioned baccarat, which earned $148.8 million,an increase of 85.8%, while its $682.1 million drop was down 3.1%. Also, its retention was 21.82% compared to 11.38% from 2022.
Poor performance of slot machines:
The excellent performance of baccarat and table games mentioned above significantly balances the small income generated by the slot machines. Elaborating further, their income of $814.6 million was down by 5.01%, while profit from coin-in slots of $11.6 billion was down 1.4%.
As for the % of slot winnings, it was 7.01% from 7.28% that it was during September last year and according to this latest data it represents a decline in 3 of the last 4 months. On the Strip, slot machine income was $383.1 million, down 6.4%. In addition, income from coin-in slots was $4.7 billion, down 3.7%. Slot retention was 8.14% compared to 8.38 last year.
Aside from September, slot income last fell in July of last year, meaning September marked the first drop in slot profit in 2023, finishing a 30-month streak of increasing slot income on the Strip since March 2021.
Commenting on the slot machine’s particularly poor performance for September, John DeCree, a gaming industry analyst at Las Vegas-based CBRE Equity Research, commented in a report to the investors according to the Las Vegas Review Journal: “Although table volumes have been trending down year over year since May, September marked the first month that slot volumes declined since reopening from the pandemic. Macroeconomic pressures and tough comps could be causing the trend in tables, however, we suspect the cyber-attack that disrupted MGM’s slot systems in September could be more to blame for the decline in slot handle.”
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