(Kimberly James) – Because of the coronavirus and government restrictions mean to slow its spread, Nevada’s 2020 gaming numbers have been all over the map. After a strong start to the year, casinos shut down in March through May, grounding gaming to a near halt. Reopening their doors in June, casinos began to see visitors, though nowhere near the scale of years past. Gaming revenue continues to show month-over-month growth, however, with July showing a surprising increase.
Statewide, Nevada’s casinos earned $756.8 million in July. This is a 26.2 percent decline, or $261.8 million, from July 2019 figures. But it’s a 35.5 percent increase over June 2020, which was 45.5 lower than June 2019.
Clark County’s casinos won $612.8 million in July, a 28.8 percent decrease from July 2019, according to Gaming Today.
“Although the Strip increased sequentially 38.5 percent compared to June 2020, the Strip’s decline accounted for $212.7 million of the $268.1 million decrease, or 79.3 percent of the decline,” Michael Lawton, senior research analyst at Nevada’s Gaming Control Board, told The Center Square. “This illustrates the challenges this market is facing and will continue to face due to limited air travel, no mid-week convention business and the lack of large scale events and entertainment options.”
Lawton said three additional Las Vegas Strip properties resumed operations in July – Aria, Mandalay Bay and Bally’s Las Vegas. Properties on the Las Vegas Strip that are still not open include The Cromwell, The Mirage, Oyo Hotel and Casino, Palms Resort, Park MGM, Planet Hollywood, The Rio and Tropicana Las Vegas.
Most of the increase in gaming revenue came from Las Vegas Valley’s local casinos, which are faring a bit better than those on the Strip as the industry recovers from the coronavirus shutdown.
“The Las Vegas Valley’s local casinos do not rely on air travel, convention business or large scale events,” Lawton said. “As expected, these properties’ results are experiencing a faster recovery compared to the Strip.”