Nevada gaming revenues jumped more than 4 percent in June, the fifth straight monthly increase in 2018, although falling short of the $1 billion mark for the second time this year.
The results, released Tuesday by the Gaming Control Board, had two competing narratives.
Reno helped fuel the state’s increase with a nearly 20 percent revenue jump over June 2017. Washoe County, which includes Reno, Sparks, and North Lake Tahoe, has seen 14 consecutive months of gaming revenue increases.
Also, June’s monthly total ended the 2018 fiscal year, in which Nevada gaming revenue reached $11.8 billion, up 3.2 percent over fiscal 2017. Las Vegas Strip gaming revenue was up 2 percent to $6.6 billion during the 12-month period, and Reno’s gaming totals grew 6.6 percent to $632.2 million.
During fiscal 2018, every reporting area of Nevada showed a gaming revenue increase. Control Board Senior Research Analyst Michael Lawton said that marked first time the entire state was in positive territory since fiscal 2000.
“We want wide spread gaming revenue growth,” Lawton said. “It gives the state a sense of confidence that we’re not just driven by one market.”
During June, Nevada gaming revenue was $933 million, up 4.17 percent. Las Vegas Strip casinos contributed $523.9 million toward the total, an increase of almost 5.4 percent from a year ago.
However, Reno’s casino market grew revenue 19.8 percent to $59.4 million during June. Sparks – a neighboring city to Reno – saw gaming revenue climb almost 13 percent to $11.2 million.
Lawton called Washoe County a “hybrid market,” which is fueled by both the residents and tourists. Reno topped 5 million visitors last year, the first time in more than a decade the city has reached that total. Also, the local economy has seen a boost from technology-related businesses moving into the market.
Stifel Nicolaus gaming analyst Steven Wieczynski said Reno’s gaming revenue growth for the first half of the year is outpacing the average regional market growth rate in the current quarter.
“As in the Las Vegas locals market, Reno continues to benefit from a thriving local economy, stable supply environment and continued focus on margin improvement,” Wieczynski said,
June had mixed results in other parts of the state. Downtown Las Vegas and North Las Vegas gaming revenue both fell 4.4 percent and casino revenue in South Lake Tahoe was down almost 8.7 percent.
Lawton said June was “a strong table games month.” Las Vegas Strip table game revenues grew 17.4 percent during the month, which included a 12.3 percent increase in baccarat.
Fiscal 2018 statewide total was 7.3 percent below the $12.7 billion reached in 2007, the highest fiscal mark in state history. Meanwhile, sports wagering in fiscal 2018 set records. The amount wagered was $4.9 billion while the revenue on the total was $281.6 million.
Meanwhile, in Las Vegas, visitor volume fell 1.1 percent to 3.56 million during June, according to statistics provided by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. The agency said switch in dates of the Electric Daisy Carnival music festival to May was a reason for the decline. Convention attendance grew during the month, however. by 2.9 percent.
Howard Stutz is the executive editor of CDC Gaming Reports. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @howardstutz on Twitter.