Nevada Gaming Falls 6.1% To $887 Million In August 2011

After three months of increases for Nevada’s casinos, August saw gaming revenues in the state drop once more, this time by 6.1% To $887 million. From the figures, Nevada’s slots revenue remained largely unchanged and were up by less than 1% yoy to $584.3 million
The Nevada Gaming Control Board’s latest results show a $57.9 million decrease in gaming revenue compared to the same month last year, with state gaming taxes collected at $47.2 million compared with $61.8 million in August 2010.
Breaking the figures down further, the Las Vegas Strip, which accounts for around half of Nevada’s gaming revenue, saw an 8.7% fall in revenue to $496.9 million, even though visitor numbers had risen by 2.8% to 3.29 million in August.
However, August last year marked a record high for Baccarat on the strip, making comparisons between the year-on-year result less meaningful. Last August, Baccarat increased by 37% to $165 million and as JPMorgan Chase & Co. analyst Joseph Greff explains:
“Backing out baccarat results, total win on the Las Vegas Strip was actually up 4.7% in August. We believe our gradual recovery thesis for the LV Strip remains intact.”
Elsewhere around the state, South Lake Tahoe bucked trends and was up 16.2% to $27 million. The rest of the numbers were not so good, though, with Washoe County down almost 10% , Clark County down 7%, Downtown Las Vegas down 4.2%, North Las Vegas down 6.5%, Laughlin down 5.6% and Carson City down 5.9%.
Nevertheless, Nevada casinos are still up by 5.2% for the first eight months of the year and summing up the overall results, analyst Steven Wieczynski from Stifel Nicolaus Capital Markets said:
“We would caution investors from reading too much into today’s report. Excluding highly volatile baccarat play, we believe August results provide further evidence of stabilization in Las Vegas Strip gaming trends.”

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