January 14, 2013 | Back to: News

Lake Tahoe casinos buck Nevada trend, see November gaming win increase

CARSON CITY, Nev. - Nevada casinos' gaming win took an 11 percent hit in November, partly because sports bettors and blackjack players got lucky and partly because the month suffered in comparison to a strong November 2011 for the clubs.

Total statewide win was $782.6 million as every reporting area in the state except Lake Tahoe and Churchill and Elko counties reported a decrease compared with the same month a year ago. The total win was nearly $98 million less than the take in the previous November.

In most other markets across the state, sports book losses accounted for a significant part of the decreased win, including all Washoe County markets except North Lake Tahoe.

Total Washoe win was $51.8 million, a 3.1 percent or $1.7 million decrease. While slot win in Washoe ticked up a bit, the county's sports books lost $1.8 million.

The two Tahoe reporting areas were the bright spot for the state. North Shore casinos saw a 7.2 percent increase to $1.65 million in November, a gain of $111,000 over the previous year. The slot win jumped nearly 23 percent, more than enough to cover a $112,000 loss by sports books.

At Stateline casinos, win increased 26.6 percent to $17.7 million. Win from "21" tables increased nearly 14 percent to $1.22 million and roulette win jumped nearly 400 percent to $2.29 million.

But the big increase was the more than $5.7 million generated in the "other games" category. At the South Shore that means baccarat. Those gains more than offset a nearly 16 percent drop in slot win at Stateline.

Gaming Control Board Analyst Mike Lawton said sports books lost more than $8 million this November - a swing of $25.4 million. According to the board's monthly report, most of the favorite football and baseball teams covered the spread, resulting in losses for the books. Football alone lost $5.3 million.

In addition, "21" players did much better this past November, resulting in a $12.1 million or 23 percent decrease in the casinos' win on that game.

The "win" is what was left in casino coffers after bettors wagered about $11 billion on table games, sports betting and slot machines. A breakdown shows $2.4 billion was bet on cards and other games, while gamblers plunked $8.6 billion into slot and video gambling machines.

Lawton said last November wasn't as strong as November 2011, which benefited from a Manny Pacquiao-Juan Manuel Marquez fight that drew high rollers to baccarat tables in Las Vegas. By comparison, baccarat win this November, with no heavy special events, was down more than 25 percent.

Finally, Lawton said there was an issue in reporting slot revenues since November ended on a Friday. That means some November slot revenue will show up in the board's December report.

The Carson Valley area, which includes valley portions of Douglas County, also suffered from sports book losses - $184,000 down compared to a year ago. Both slot win and, because of the books, game and table win were down. This year's $7.47 million was off 3.47 percent.

In Churchill County, a $12,000 loss by sports books was easily covered by a 3.4 percent gain in slot win. Since all but $41,000 of Churchill's $1.8 million November win was generated by slots, the county saw a 2.1 percent increase overall.

The other bright spot was Elko County, which posted a 4.2 percent gain to $21.1 million.

Geoff Dornan
gdornan@nevadaappeal.com


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Tahoe Daily Tribune Updated Jan 14, 2013 11:29AM Published Jan 14, 2013 11:27AM Copyright 2013 Tahoe Daily Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.