Nevada casinos lost a combined $1.35b in 2013, 11.2% more than 2012’s $1.21b loss and the fifth straight year of red ink. The Nevada Gaming Control Board (GCB) released its annual Nevada Gaming Abstract on Friday, which tracked the collective performance of the 263 state gaming joints that grossed a minimum of $1m last year. Total revenue – gaming, rooms, food, beverage, etc. – at these 263 casinos was $23.075b, up 0.4% from 2012’s $22.976b. Total gaming revenue was $10.395b, up 1.1% from 2012.
Casinos on the Las Vegas Strip fared slightly better in 2013, with losses improving 13% to $1.496b. Strip gaming revenue rose 3.5% to $5.75b – about 1/8 of Macau’s $45.2b tally – while total revenue rose 1.7% to $15.5b. Gaming represented 37% of Strip revenue, up one point from 2012 and well below the statewide average of 45.1%. Hotel rooms accounted for 25% of Strip revenue, food snagged 15.7% and beverages served up 7.6%.
Further historical perspective by UNLV Center for Gaming Research director David G. Schwartz shows the influence of Asian high-rollers on Strip results. Revenue from casino table games hit $2.57b in 2013, up from $2.36b in 2012, but still off 2007’s pre-recession high of $2.65b. Meanwhile, comp expenses hit $1.62b, well above 2007’s $1.52b. Comps represented 30.57% of 2013’s revenue, compared to 25.6% in 2007. So the Strip has to deal with all the volatility of baccarat – up sharply one month, down just as sharply the next – while the costs of wining and dining visiting Asian VIP remains constant – as in growing.
Strip sportsbook revenue came in at $46.1m in 2013, down from $48m in 2012. Sportsbook revenue has now declined for the fourth straight year. In fact, were it not for a significant spike in 2010, sportsbook revenue would have fallen in every year since peaking at $83.2m in 2007. Sports betting accounted for just 1.3% of statewide gaming revenue in 2013.