Gaming Win Down Six Percent In Nevada In June, Difficult Comparisons Cited As Primary Cause

CARSON CITY – Nevada casinos took in $832.5 million in gaming revenue in June, a decline of 6 percent compared to the same month a year ago, the Gaming Control Board reported today.

The win was about $53 million less than June 2011 as casinos tried to build on the win in June 2011, which was up 16 percent over June 2010.

Special events around the state and increased visitor volume could not offset the difficult comp against the June 2011 gains, said Michael Lawton, senior research analyst for the control board.

It is the second consecutive month of revenue declines. Gaming revenues fell 10.1 percent in May.

The Las Vegas Strip was off 4.5 percent in June, bringing in $483.7 million compared to $506.7 million in June 2011. The comp for the Strip was even tougher, with June 2011 up 32.3 percent over June 2010, Lawton said.

Electric Daisy Carnival 2011. / Photo: Roman Fuchs via Wikimedia Commons.

The Las Vegas locals markets were hit in June as well, with North Las Vegas down 26.2 percent, Laughlin down 20.3 percent and downtown Las Vegas off 12.8 percent. One factor in these numbers was that June ended on a Saturday, meaning that slot revenue from the final weekend  of the month will be reported in July, he said.

A bright spot in the report was Washoe County, which saw gaming revenues increase by 7.3 percent in June to $66.8 million. Reno was up 9.4 percent to $50 million.

Nevada had a number of events and developments that brought in tourists around the state, Lawton said.

There was a Manny Pacquiao fight against Timothy Bradley on June 9 at the MGM Grand, a baccarat tournament at the Bellagio on June 16 and 17, the Electric Daisy Carnival musical festival at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway from June 8 to 10 and the new terminal at McCarran International Airport opened on June 27. In Northern Nevada, a Don Henley concert June 28 and a U.S. Women’s Open bowling event from June 21 to June 27 took place.

“You’ll see that Reno’s visitation was up 3.4 percent for the month of June,” Lawton said. “That’s the first increase they’ve had in a few months so those were definitely good events.”

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority reported today that tourism was up in Las Vegas in June as well, with 3.39 million visitors for a 2.1 percent increase over June 2011.

Another tough comp in June was the game and table win statewide, which totaled $325.3 million. It was almost flat, down $3 million over June 2011. Game and table win in June 2011 was up 55.2 percent over June 2010.

The baccarat win totaled $103.1 million, down 3.8 percent over June 2011. The volume wagered on the game was up significantly over June 2011, but the casinos did not win as much from gamblers, Lawton said. The “hold” by casinos in June was 12.4 percent compared to a 15.6 percent in June 2011.

“The good sign there is that the play was definitely there,” he said. “We just didn’t hold as well as we did last June.”

The final six months of the calendar year show easier comps and so could produce better results in monthly revenues, Lawton said.

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Audio clips:

Michael Lawton, senior research analyst for the control board, says the story of the June report was the difficult comps from June 2011:

080912Lawton1 :12 so basically flat.”

Lawton says Reno visitor volume was up in June in part because of strong events:

080912Lawton2 :11 definitely good events.”

Lawton says baccarat volume was up but the casinos did not win as much from gamblers in June:

080912Lawton3 :10 we normally see.”