Posts Tagged ‘calendar year 2011’

Nevada Casinos Eke Out Modest Revenue Gain In December, Up 2.8 Percent For All Of 2011

By Sean Whaley | 3:04 pm February 9th, 2012

CARSON CITY – Nevada’s casinos brought in $855.7 million in gaming revenue in December 2011 for a 2.1 percent gain over the same month in 2010, the state Gaming Control Board reported today.

The Las Vegas Strip saw a 3.6 percent gain, bringing in $518.4 million.

Las Vegas Strip. / Photo by Antoine Taveneaux via Wikimedia Commons.

Michael Lawton, senior research analyst for the control board, said a positive element of the December report is that for the first time since September of 2007, baccarat win declined but the industry still reported a revenue gain. This is a sign that the mass market visitor volume is improving, he said.

Baccarat, the card game played by high rollers, was down 4.5 percent, or $7.2 million, on flat volume.

A number of Clark County markets reported revenue declines in December, including downtown Las Vegas, which was off 10.7 percent; North Las Vegas, down 11.4 percent; Laughlin, down 8.3 percent; and the Boulder Strip, off 7.4 percent.

Washoe County, on the other hand, reported a double digit gain to 10.2 percent, bringing in $58.5 million over the holiday month. Lawton said the good weather in December 2011 compared to December 2010 was a major reason cited for the positive report.

Though modest, casinos finished the year on a positive note.

“We finished the year with three consecutive increases so hopefully we can carry that momentum into 2012,” he said.

Visitor volume to Las Vegas in December grew by 2.5 percent to 2.96 million, according to information from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. For calendar year 2011, volume was up 4.3 percent to 38.9 million.

For the full 2011 calendar year, Nevada’s non-restricted gaming licensees reported total gaming win of $10.7 billion. This amounts to a 2.8 percent increase compared to calendar year 2010, which increased 0.1 percent.

It was the second year of increases after declines in calendar years 2008 and 2009.

Slot win increased 1.5 percent in 2011 after decreasing 2.7 percent in 2010. Game and table win increased 5.2 percent in 2011, following a 5.6 percent increase last year. Over the ten-year period from 2002 to 2011, total win growth has averaged 1.5 percent with growth in slot win averaging 1.1 percent and game and table win growth averaging 2.2 percent.

“When we analyze these numbers I think what we can take away from the calendar year is that it’s not robust growth, it’s small growth but it’s a lot broader growth than what we experienced last year (2010),” Lawton said. “Last year the only major market to post an increase was the Strip, which basically caused Clark County to post an increase. But this year in Southern Nevada the only market to have a decrease was Laughlin, which was down 3.7 percent.”

Across the entire state there were 10 markets that experienced positive growth in 2011, he said.

Gaming revenues were up in 2011 even when the baccarat factor is removed, suggesting a good balance between the small number of high spending card players and the larger number of typical mass market visitors, Lawton said.

“Slot volume was up 0.4 percent, that’s the first increase we’ve seen in slot volume since calendar year 2006,” he said. “So those are all really good metrics to identify or illustrate that the recovery is broader.

“We’re cautiously optimistic that if things continue to go the way they are with increased visitation and large conventions and the heavy event calendar, we feel pretty confident that even though we have some difficult baccarat comparisons to come up against, we’re finally starting to see that mass market customer blend nicely and complement the baccarat growth that we’ve experienced,” Lawton said.

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Audio clips:

Michael Lawton, senior research analyst for the control board, says calendar year 2011 growth is broader than in 2010:

020912Lawton1 :26 down 3.7 percent.”

Lawton says the metrics show the recovery is broader:

020912Lawton2 :13 recovery is broader.”

Lawton says the agency is cautiously optimistic that the mass market visitor volume is improving:

020912Lawton3 :25 that we’ve experienced.”

Lawton says mass market play is now complementing baccarat play:

020912Lawton4 :19 complement baccarat play.”