Gaming numbers not encouraging
CARSON CITY – Nevada casinos showed a slight gain in winnings in August – but the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the East Coast have ensured September won’t be a positive month for the clubs.
Figures released Wednesday by the state Gaming Control Board show the statewide win from gamblers hit $824.6 million in August, a gain of 1.2 percent compared with the same month a year earlier.
But following the Sept. 11 attacks, there has been a big drop in tourist traffic, forcing Nevada casinos to lay off thousands of workers.
The slump seems to be easing somewhat now, but the GCB’s Frank Streshley said in releasing the August numbers that ”we all know that September is going to be down.”
Actual win figures for September weren’t expected to be released until about Oct. 10, but Gov. Kenny Guinn’s budget experts are hoping for some early estimates later this month.
A breakdown of the August win figures shows that resorts on the Las Vegas Strip had a gain of 2.2 percent and downtown Las Vegas clubs were up 5.8 percent.
Casinos on Lake Tahoe’s south shore were hit hard, with a win that was 18.2 percent lower than the August 2000 win.
Casinos in North Las Vegas had a 23.5 percent decline in win, due largely to new competition in the nearby Summerlin area.
Despite the Reno area’s big Hot August Nights event and the Reno-Tahoe Open, the win for Reno casinos was down 3.3 percent. But casinos in neighboring Sparks had a 5 percent gain.
”Win” is a gross figure, with no operating costs or other expenses deducted. And it’s casino revenue only – separate from hotel, restaurant or bar revenues generated by the resorts.
The win was the money held by the casinos after gamblers bet a total of $12.1 billion – $10.2 billion in slots and $1.9 billion on table games.
The statewide win total included $551.6 million from slot machines, up 4.3 percent; and $268.2 million from table games, down 4.5 percent.
A breakdown of table games that produced the most revenue in August shows casinos won $104.4 million on blackjack; $34.5 million on craps; and $27.4 million from baccarat.
Dollar slots won $126.1 million; quarter slots won $198.7 million; and nickel slots won $154 million.
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