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Taxable sales increase in Clark County, but not everywhere

Updated June 15, 2023 - 12:21 pm

Nevada and Clark County both reported an increase in taxable sales in March, although the majority of the state’s counties experienced a decrease.

The Department of Taxation reported that Nevada had roughly $7.7 billion in taxable sales overall in March, which is a 2.4 percent increase from $7.5 billion in March 2022. Clark County, meanwhile, had about $5.8 billion in retail taxable sales, or a 5.3 percent increase from $5.5 billion the previous year.

But 10 of the state’s counties, as well as Carson City, experienced declines in taxable sales. Washoe County reported the largest decline — $1.02 billion, a 6.1 percent decrease — while Mineral County’s $4.9 million decrease was the largest percentage drop at 24.9 percent.

It’s not surprising that Nevada would see a boost in taxable sales, even if a majority of its counties see a decline, because of the out-sized economic impact of Clark County, according to Stephen Miller, research director at UNLV’s Center for Business and Economic Research. He estimates Clark County makes up 75 percent of the state’s economy and the March taxable sales report shows Clark County made up 72.8 percent of taxable sales in Nevada.

Clark County reported the largest dollar increase in taxable sales while tiny Esmeralda County reported the largest percentage increase — 100 percent, from $1.6 million in 2022 to $3.2 million in 2023.

Both Nevada and Clark County also saw a boost from the February taxable sales report. Nevada taxable sales in March were up 19.7 percent over February while Clark County’s taxable sales increased by 20.4 percent.

The March report shows a continued trend of taxable sales going up and an overall trend of Nevada’s economy going in the right direction, Miller said.

“It’s one more positive component to the economic picture,” he said.

He pointed to other positive signs in the economy, including a lowered inflation rate and an overall strong labor market.

The increase in taxable sales, at least in Clark County, correlates with an increase in visitation. Las Vegas had a busy March with 3.66 million visitors, which is 9.6 percent higher than last year.

Consumer spending also increased by 0.1 percent in March, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, which added to the taxable sales.

Here are the areas that reported a decline in taxable sales in March compared to March 2022:

— Carson City: $134.9 million, down 31 percent.

— Churchill County: $39.9 million, down 14.9 percent.

— Douglas County: $85.7 million, down 7.7 percent.

— Elko County: $171.1 million, down 1.3 percent.

— Humboldt County: $67 million, down 1.9 percent.

— Lander County: $28.5 million, down 20.2 percent.

— Lyon County: $80.7 million, down 10.1 percent.

— Mineral County: $4.9 million, down 24.9 percent.

— Washoe County: $1.02 billion, down 6.1 percent.

— White Pine County: $29.8 million, down 5.7 percent.

Here are the areas that reported an increase in taxable sales in March compared to March 2022:

— Clark County: $5.8 billion, up 5.3 percent.

— Esmeralda County: $3.2 million, up 100 percent.

— Eureka County: $39.5 million, up 35.8 percent.

— Lincoln County: $5.5 million, up 20.5 percent.

— Nye County: $93.2 million, up 9.2 percent.

— Pershing County: $19.2 million, up 6.1 percent.

— Storey County: $107.3 million, up 39.5 percent.

Here are the top performing categories for taxable sales in Clark County and the percent change from a year ago:

1. Food services and drinking places: $1.2 billion, a 10.8 percent increase from last year.

2. Motor vehicle and parts dealers: $622.2 million, down 2.7 percent.

3. Merchant wholesalers, durable goods: $423.2 million, up 5.8 percent.

4. Non-store retailers: $376.8 million, up 3.6 percent.

5. General merchandise stores: $367.9 million, down 7.1 percent.

6. Clothing and clothing accessory stores: $366.1 million, up 2.3 percent.

7. Building materials and garden equipment and supplies: $239.3 million, down 15.1 percent.

8. Miscellaneous store retailers: $184.2 million, up 4.3 percent.

9. Accommodation: $164.5 million, up 5 percent.

10. Rental and leasing services: $159.1 million, up 1.4 percent.

Contact Sean Hemmersmeier at shemmersmeier@reviewjournal.com or on Twitter @seanhemmers34.

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