Shutdown cuts 2020 Nevada gaming win by over a third

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Pandemic-induced casino closures cut total gaming win by Nevada’s casinos 34.6 percent in calendar year 2020.

Gamers won just $7.87 billion for the year compared to just over $12 billion in calendar 2019. That is the lowest annual statewide total since 1997.

It was the first time since calendar year 2008 that every market in the state recorded decreases, which Gaming Control board Analyst Mike Lawton said was a direct result of the closure of casinos for 78 days from March until June.



Hardest hit was the Las Vegas Strip where total win fell 43.3 percent to $3.73 billion. Both slot win and games win were down more than 40 percent. Some Strip casinos remain either closed or operating with weekday shutdowns.

Because of the statewide shutdown of gaming operations, slot coin-in, the total amount wagered, fell 31.6 percent to $78.6 billion and games drop fell 35.5 percent to $19 billion statewide.



Western Nevada casinos also suffered from the closure but not as dramatically as many southern reporting areas.

The Carson Valley Area, which includes valley portions of Douglas County as well as the capital, reported total win of $89.6 million. That is down 19.5 percent compared to 2019’s $111.3 million. Game and Table win fell 46.7 percent but games play makes up only a small percentage of the area’s gaming win.

South Shore casinos at Stateline saw win drop 19.3 percent to $182.16 million from $225.6 million a year ago. The decrease was evenly spread between slot and games play.

In Washoe County, the overall decrease was 21.1 percent — $675.99 million compared with $857.2 million. The hardest hit Washoe market was the North Shore at Crystal Bay in the Tahoe basin. Win dropped 26 percent there for the year to $18.69 million compared to $25.3 million a year ago. North Shore has recorded just four annual increases in the past decade.

But Washoe also had the reporting area with the lowest percentage decrease of any area in the state. The Balance of County category was down just 7.7 percent to $61.3 million.

Slot play was dominated completely during the year by the new, high-tech penny and multi-denominational machines. Each of those two categories of machines generated more than $2.35 billion in win in 2020, accounting for $4.73 billion of the total $5.4 billion in slot win.

In the games category, 21 and Baccarat were the big winners even though both were down 42 percent from the previous year. 21 raked in $643 million and Baccarat $604.3 million during 2020.

The sports pool, which has grown dramatically especially since authorization of mobile apps to make bets, contributed $262.7 million, just a hair behind Craps at $264.1 million.

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