Industry

Nevada Gaming Revenue — Limited To Two Online Verticals — Collapses In April

The decisions by Nevada to offer only online poker among casino games and to require in-person registration for mobile sports betting came back to haunt the state in April.

In figures announced by state regulators on Friday, Nevada casinos managed only $3.64 million in overall revenue for the pandemic-stricken month. Las Vegas Strip casinos produced all but a quarter million of that.

Some casinos even reported negative revenue, thanks to belated payoffs of college and pro football wagering.

Year-under-year

Nevada casinos raked in $936.4 million in April 2019, with a 99.6% decrease a year later.

New Jersey’s casinos, by contrast — all nine of them located in Atlantic City — saw a dropoff from $265.4 million in April 2019 to $82.6 million last month. That’s a decline of 68.9%, which is also brutal, but not as bad as the devastation in Nevada.

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Nevada regulators redacted the sports betting numbers in the April 2020 report. It is reasonable to infer that the presence of one legal online poker site, operated by Caesars, was the only thing keeping total revenue above zero.

Not a single area of the state avoided a 99% decline, with downtown Las Vegas as the “best” at a dismal 99.3%. North Lake Tahoe had the worst results at a decline of 100.3%, with more than a dozen other sectors of the state all landing within that 1% range of loss.

For the fiscal year that began on July 1, 2019, Nevada casino revenues are down by 11.4%.

Las Vegas-based journalist Howard Stutz, who appeared this week on the Gamble On podcast to discuss the impending reopening of Las Vegas casinos, shared the revenue breakdown on Twitter:

The road forward

The best those in the industry can do is to console themselves that about half of the Las Vegas casinos are scheduled for a semi-grand reopening next Thursday.

Dining will be reservation only, housekeeping details have been adjusted, there will be no nightclub or entertainment shows, and all sorts of pandemic protocols will be in place on the casino floors.

Still, after a lost April that led into what will be a lost May for Las Vegas casinos, at least it’s something.

Photo by Ryan Pensotes / Shutterstock.com

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