Las Vegas Strip revenue falls in January for first time since June

February 29, 2024 11:25 AM
Photo: Shutterstock
  • Buck Wargo, CDC Gaming Reports
February 29, 2024 11:25 AM
  • Buck Wargo, CDC Gaming Reports

Despite a 3.8% decline on the Strip, Nevada gaming revenue set an all-time record for January, boosted by improved weather in Reno. It was the first year-over-year decline on the Strip since June, some bigger spenders apparently delaying their Las Vegas plans until the Super Bowl and Chinese New Year in February.

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While the Strip slowed, locals casinos registered a year-over-year gain of 4.5%, aided by the newly opened Durango Casino & Resort in the southwest valley. The off-Strip casinos brought in $285.3 million in revenue in January, an increase from the $273.1 million in January 2023, according to Deutsche Bank.

“The impact of Durango continues to show, with the balance of Clark County gross gaming revenue up 10.9% year over year in January, while both the Boulder Strip and North Las Vegas segments were down low- to mid- single digits,” according to Deutsche Bank analyst Carlo Santarelli in a note to investors this morning. “Durango opened on 12/5/23.”

The Nevada Gaming Control Board reported Thursday that the $1.27 billion in statewide gaming revenue in January rose 0.51% aided by a 55% increase in Reno. That’s a $6.5 million increase over January 2023.

In Las Vegas, the Strip brought in $686.1 million in revenue, a drop of $27.1 million from $713.2 million in January 2023. Clark County as a whole fell 1% to $1.1 billion.

This is the Strip’s first decrease since June 2023, ending a streak of six consecutive increases, according to Michael Lawton, a senior economic analyst with the Gaming Control Board.

“January 2023 represented a very difficult comparison, as the Strip was up 25.7% over January 2022,” Lawton said. “Furthermore, it would be a safe assumption that after an extremely active November and December, customers deferred trips from January to February for the Super Bowl. Additionally, the timing of Chinese New Year influenced January’s results.”

When compared to January 2022, Nevada’s January 2023 gaming win increased 18%, with the Strip’s gaming win increasing by 25.7%. Chinese New Year celebrations took place in January 2023 compared to February of this year. In addition, January 2024 had one less weekend day, Lawton said.

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority reported Thursday that Las Vegas welcomed an estimated 3.38 million visitors in January, a 3.3% increase over the 3.27 million in January 2023. Passengers traveling through Harry Reid International Airport fell nearly 1% to 4.34 million, while vehicle traffic on I-15 from California fell 5.3%

Despite Las Vegas adding 4,300 rooms with the opening of two new casinos, hotel occupancy was on par with January 2023, the 78.9% occupancy falling by 0.2 points.

Affected in part by the move of the CES trade show back to midweek dates this January from the weekend dates it spanned last January, weekend occupancy for the month declined to 83.6%, down 4.8 points, while midweek occupancy increased to 77%, up 1.8 points year over year, according to the LVCVA.

Strip occupancy was 81.7% in January, an increase of 0.2 points, while downtown occupancy remained at 66.4%.
The average daily room rate for the month matched January 2023 at about $191, while revenue per room declined modestly year over year to just under $151, down 0.5%.

Las Vegas had plenty of other events in January. The Raiders played a home game at Allegiant Stadium. Weekends with Adele returned to the Colosseum at Caesars Palace. U2 continued its residency at the MSG Sphere. CES and the World of Concrete trade shows returned to the Las Vegas Convention Center.

North Las Vegas and Boulder Strip saw declines in January, falling 5.9% and 3.1%, respectively, from January 2023.

Downtown Las Vegas held steady with $85.7 million in revenue, a nearly 1% increase from $84.8 million in January 2023.

Laughlin in Clark County had a 4% gain to $44.4 million.

Reno was the story of the month by bringing in $65.3 million in revenue, up from $42.1 million in January 2023. The county rose 35.4% to $87.6 million, a gain of $22.9 million.

Lawton said improved weather compared to snowy conditions in January 2023 played one factor in the increase. January 2023 totals were down 12.9% compared to January 2022. In addition, slot win increased 36.1% ($19.3 million). Slot coin-in totaled $1.2 billion and was up 4.4% ($50 million) versus January 2023. The hold was 6.2% versus 4.8% last year.

“Slot collections timing by one operator significantly impacted this month’s results,” Lawton said. “The combined totals for December and January reveal that slot win increased by a still-impressive 11.34% for the two months.”

Nevada sportsbooks won $64.7 million, up 28.4% compared to January 2023, on a hold percentage of 8.3% versus 5.4% last year. Sportsbook wagers totaled $782.9 million, down 16.4% compared to last January when $936.5 million was wagered statewide. Mobile wagers totaled $508.9 million, down 12.5% or $72.6 million and accounted for 65% of total wagers.

The Strip’s slot win increased 3.1% or $12.2 million with a 4.5% or $205 million decrease in coin-in. Slot hold was 9.22% versus 8.54%.

The Strip’s games win decreased 12.1% or $39.2 million and drop decreased 22% or $542.6 million. Games hold percentage was 14.8% versus 13.2% last year. Games win was up 27.7% and drop was up 9.9% last January.

Strip baccarat win totaled $97 million and was up $6.7 million or 7.4%, while volume totaled $590.2 million, down 31.9% or $276.4 million. The hold was 16.4% versus 10.4%. Baccarat win was up 44.1% and drop was up 23.5% last January, Lawton said.

Strip twenty-one win totaled $70.5 million and was down 24% or $22.2 million, while volumes were down 13.2% or $73.7 million. The hold was 14.5% versus 16.6% last year. Twenty-one win was up 12.7% and drop was up 17.1% last January.

Strip roulette win totaled $21 million and decreased 47.9% or $19.3 million, while volumes were down 4.3% or $7.8 million. The hold was 11.9% versus 22% last year. Roulette win was up 159.5% and drop was up 34% last January.

The Strip win at craps totaled $23.1 million and decreased $5 million or 17.9%, while volumes were down $34.2 million or 20.2%. The hold was 17.1% versus 16.6% last year. Crap win was up 14.3% and drop was up 24.4% last January.

In Washoe County, Sparks recorded a revenue decline of 7.9% to $13.1 million. North Lake Tahoe in Washoe County rose 13.8% to $2.24 million.

Washoe County game and table win was up 32.4% ($3.7 million) and volumes totaled $84.4 million, up 6.6% ($5.3 million). The hold was 17.8% versus 14.3% a year ago.

Washoe County twenty-one win increased 98% or $2.6 million, as volume increased 15.3% or $2.9 million versus January 2023. The hold was 24% versus 14% last year.

In South Lake Tahoe, the $6.91 million in January rose 8.6%.

Elko County had a 11.7% decline to $28.9 million.