Nevada’s gaming win fell just short of $1B in April

A streak has ended with a record.

After 10 consecutive months of fewer Southern Nevada visitors than in the same months of 2017 and 2016, April totals exceeded 2017 amounts.

But not by much.

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority on Thursday reported record April visitation of 3.548 million people, 0.1 percent more than in April 2017.

The LVCVA last reported a year-over-year increase in visitation in May 2017 when totals were up 0.3 percent to 3.6 million. Southern Nevada’s destination marketing organization also reported convention attendance of 563,000 in April, up 11.5 percent from a year ago, thanks primarily to three trade shows rotating back to Las Vegas in April.

The LVCVA reported 12,000 people attended Waste Expo, 8,600 were at the National Indian Gaming Association and 8,100 attended CinemaCon, which last year was held in March instead of April.

Resorts reported 96.9 percent weekend occupancy in April, the highest percentage since July, boosting citywide occupancy to 91 percent for the month.

Nevada’s gaming industry ended its three-month string of billion-dollar monthly win, but continued to produce stellar numbers in April.

The state Gaming Control Board on Thursday reported statewide gaming win of $953.7 million, up 7.7 percent over the same month a year ago.

In Clark County, win was up 8.1 percent to $825.3 million. The Las Vegas Strip climbed 5.1 percent to $499.5 million for the month while downtown Las Vegas soared 15.6 percent to $60.5 million.

It was the first time this year the state hasn’t hit the $1 billion mark for win, but all but two of the 19 submarkets the Control Board monitors had increases in April and those two — Reno and Wendover — had declines of less than 1 percent.

The more telling three-month trend also showed strength in the county and on the Strip. Since February, gaming win is up 6.1 percent statewide, 6.4 percent in Clark County and 8.6 percent on the Strip. Downtown Las Vegas, measuring against a tough comparison for February through April 2017, is up just 0.4 percent over three months.

With two months of win calculations left in the 2017-18 fiscal year, state win is up 2.9 percent to $9.84 billion.

On the Strip, penny slots and multi-denomination machines generated the most win for casinos. Strip operators won $111.6 million on penny slots, up 12.6 percent from April 2017 and representing a 12.1 percent winning percentage.

On the tables, 1,250 blackjack units won $72.4 million, while 321 baccarat tables won $63.2 million, a 17.6 percent decline from the previous year.

“The drivers were 21 (blackjack), which was up 14 percent or $8.9 million from last year, and roulette, up 98.3 percent or $12.9 million,” said Michael Lawton, senior research analyst for the Control Board’s Administration Division. “Roulette was facing an easy comparison as last April it was down 30.4 percent due to a poor hold percentage.”

Contact Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @RickVelotta on Twitter.

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