Nevada casinos reported a solid November performance driven by baccarat and sports betting, although the overall result failed to top the previous month’s $1b revenue tally.
Figures released Thursday by the Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB) show statewide gaming revenue of just under $967.2m, a 6.4% rise over the same month last year but well behind the $1.06b the market reported in October 2018.
November’s gains were concentrated on the Las Vegas Strip, where revenue shot up 10% to $534.5m. The Strip’s boffo performance can be credited at least in part to high-rollers sending baccarat revenue up 50.6% year-on-year to nearly $97.8m. It also helped that November 2017’s baccarat performance was particularly dire, down 23.5% year-on-year.
Baccarat’s gains allowed it to reclaim the table game revenue crown, despite blackjack rising a respectable 4.1% to $87.6m in November, although this was only about two-thirds of the game’s October 2018 total. The other major table games had a mixed month, with craps up 5% to $30.4m while roulette slumped 13% to just under $28.7m. Slots revenue was up 1.3% to $634.9m.
The state’s sportsbooks had a stellar November, with statewide revenue nearly tripling to $27.1m. The percentage rise is somewhat distorted by the fact that November 2017 saw the books lose $11.5m on their baseball wagers, Nevada’s worst ever month for baseball wagering.
The books took another bath on baseball in November 2018, losing nearly $5.9m, but such was the carnage of the previous November that this was viewed as a comparatively fortunate turn.
The other betting sports performed significantly better in November, with football up over 69% to $18.45m — despite the books whinging about a couple dire NFL weekends in which favorites covered their spreads — while basketball rose nearly 61% to $10.75m and parlay cards gained 8.8% to just under $2.4m. The ‘other’ sports category spoiled this positivity by falling 3.8% to $1.45m.
It’s worth noting that New Jersey’s regulated sports betting market generated revenue of $21.4m in November, within shouting distance of Nevada’s result, despite the Garden State’s legal betting market having only been operating for a few months compared to Nevada’s decades of experience as the country’s sole legal single-game wagering market.