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State gaming win holds steady in August

Updated September 29, 2023 - 3:21 pm

Nevada’s gaming wins in August were relatively flat compared with one year ago, with growth driven by the Strip and baccarat performance, state officials said in a report released Friday.

The state’s 437 licensed casinos won roughly $1.2 billion from gamblers last month, a modest .07 percent increase over a year ago when 435 licensed casinos operated, according to the August gaming revenue report from the Gaming Control Board.

Still, it was an all-time record win total for the month of August, said Michael Lawton, senior economic analyst for the Gaming Control Board who crunches the state’s monthly gaming statistics. It represents the 30th straight month of $1 billion in gaming wins for the state.

Clark County casinos won $1.03 billion from players, and the Strip’s licensees took $666.8 million of that or 1 percent more than August 2022, according to the state report.

Gaming win across the state in the 2023-24 fiscal year is up 3.5 percent to date, to $2.6 billion, while the Strip is up 4.8 percent.

Slot machine revenue for the state was down slightly in July to $829 million, a 2.1 percent decrease from August 2022. But table games increased in its place — up 5.1 percent to roughly $380 million in wins.

Baccarat win was particularly strong. It increased 20.2 percent year over year, to $116.2 million in wins against players. Without baccarat, statewide wins would have decreased 1.7 percent.

On the Strip, slot win totaled $368.3 million and decreased 3.4 percent when compared to August 2022 – the first decrease in slot win since July 2022, Lawton said.

Nevada sportsbooks won $18.1 million, up 12.7 percent or $2 million when compared to August one year ago. Wagers totaled $431.3, a 5.5 percent increase compared to 2022. Mobile wagers made up nearly three-in-four total wagers – $316.7 million of the $431.3 million wagers.

As is a recent trend, the Strip benefited from a strong events calendar, Lawton said. The Soccer Champions Tour played at Allegiant Stadium on Aug. 1. Two Strip residencies, Maroon 5 and Adele, returned for several shows beginning in early August. And, Beyonce’s Renaissance World Tour performed at Allegiant Stadium on Aug. 26 and 27.

Additionally, heavy rains brought in from Hurricane Hilary caused several hundred flight cancellations on Aug. 20, Lawton said.

Pre-pandemic comparisons remain strong. Statewide total win was 26.8 percent more than August 2019, Lawton said. But statewide total wins excluding the strip decreased by 1.1 percent, or $6.2 million.

The state collected $75.7 million in percentage fees from casinos through Thursday, based on August’s win. That’s 2.6 percent ahead of last year’s pace.

For the first three months of the fiscal year, $255.7 million in gaming tax revenue — 2.6 percent more than the same time last year — has been directed to Nevada’s general fund through the state’s maximum gaming tax rate of 6.75 percent.

McKenna Ross is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Contact her at mross@reviewjournal.com. Follow @mckenna_ross_ on Twitter.

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