Oct. 1 Shooting Resulted In Steep Drop For Vegas Tourism

Written By Katie Callahan on December 11, 2017
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[toc]October was a flat month overall for Nevada casinos.

However, in the wake of the recent Oct. 1 shooting, Las Vegas tourism dipped 4.2 percent. Meanwhile, gaming win surprisingly kept pace.

Statewide, total gaming win only increased by 0.27 percent this month to reach about $988.7 million from about $986.1 million the prior year. September, comparatively, saw a 3.25 percent increase, taking off from $949 million to $979.9 million.

Slot win went up due to higher hold, according to a UNLV revenue comparison of each October for the last 10 years, but nonetheless hit 3.79 percent. Game win for games and tables fell 6.04 percent this month on both lower handle and hold percentage.

Monthly revenue holds steady

From July to October, gaming win increased 3.76 percent. Here are some of the numbers from this month:

  • Clark County – -0.31%
  • Las Vegas Strip – -6.05%
  • Downtown Las Vegas – 9.96%
  • North Las Vegas – 11.59%
  • Laughlin – 2.37%
  • Boulder Strip – 17.10%
  • Mesquite – 0.54%
  • Washoe County – 3.26%
  • Reno – 3.27%
  • Sparks – 0.60%
  • North Lake Tahoe – -3.55%
  • Carson Valley – 0.13% (includes Carson City, Gardenerville, Minden, and Douglas County with the exception of South Lake Tahoe)
  • South Lake Tahoe – -16.19%
  • Elko County – 0.52%
  • Wendover – 3.13%

John Decree, a gaming analyst with Union Gaming in Las Vegas, said this in a report to investors:

“While the airport traffic numbers released last week (a 1.5 percent increase for the month) alleviated some concerns about the worst-case scenario, many had feared gross gaming revenue could be down double digits in October in the face of a difficult comparison (up 14 percent in October 2016) and the Oct. 1 tragedy. However, a 6.1 percent decline in revenue on the Strip for October is a relatively resilient outcome in our view.”

According to the Nevada Gaming Control Board, the state collected $59.6 million in percentage fees during November 2017 from the taxable revenues during October, a 0.13 percent increase.

October already at a disadvantage

Last year, October had one extra weekend. Michael Lawton, the Control Board Tax and License Division’s senior analyst, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that made this October tougher from the get-go.

“We aren’t surprised the Strip was down 6.1 percent. The decrease on the Strip was driven by decreases in both slot volume, down 3.8 percent, and game and table volume, down 6.5 percent. Still, overall the trend line remains intact as the Strip is up 2.6 percent for the calendar year to date with much softer comparisons ahead for November and December.”

Las Vegas visitation down from the shooting

In October, Vegas had 3.6 million tourists, stated the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. The LCVA reported that this is the second-steepest year-over-year drop of 2017.

For the year, visitation is off 1.4 percent to 35.7 million people.

These decreases come even as it’s the third-best month of 2017 for convention attendance. Compared to a year ago, the LCVA noted 687,209 convention attendees, a 35 percent increase.

This is namely from:

  • Global Gaming Expo
  • National Business Aviation Association
  • Emergency Medical Services Association
  • MetalCon International
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Katie Callahan

Katie Callahan is a freelance journalist, blogger and copywriter who covers everything from poker, business, education and politics to construction, startups and cybersecurity.

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