As the proliferation of non-gaming amenities such as restaurants, entertainment and shopping at Nevada’s resort-casinos attract higher levels of visitor spending each year, gaming revenue has become a smaller piece of the revenue picture. Since the early 2000s, gaming revenue at the state’s non-restricted casinos has dropped from half of all revenues to 43 percent in 2016, and among Las Vegas Strip properties the share of gaming revenue has dipped to about a third of all revenue. While gaming revenue may be a shrinking share of the resort industry’s profit profile, it remains a key source of revenue as well as an important contributor to the state general fund.
Because of the continued importance of gaming revenue in the state, recent growth trends are welcome news for both gaming operators and the Nevada budget. Following mostly flat growth in 2015 and early 2016, trailing 12-month statewide gaming revenue closed 2016 on a seven-month streak of positive year-over-year growth. The positive trend continued into January 2017 (latest data available), when trailing 12-month gaming revenue increased 2.5 percent to $11.4 billion. That month’s growth rate marked only the second time since August 2014 that the year over- year growth rate eclipsed 2.0 percent. Despite the recent positive trends, trailing 12-month gaming revenue remains well below the $13.0 billion peak recorded in late 2007.
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