With non-essential businesses closed for half of the month, Nevada’s taxable sales fell nearly 20 percent in March.
Total taxable sales were $4.53 billion, down 19.5 percent. Clark County took the biggest hit at 23.4 percent because of its heavy reliance on the tourism and hospitality industries.
With showrooms closed, auto sales fell 37 percent to $412 million.
The biggest beneficiary of the economic shutdown was to non-store retailers — read that Internet sales — which better than doubled statewide to $301.8 million, a 111.6 percent increase.
Building material sales also did well, posting a 13.8 percent increase to $277.3 million.
In Carson City, total taxable sales were $93.5 million, a 12.7 decrease compared to the same month in 2019. The big hit was the capital’s largest taxable sales generator, the auto dealers. With their showrooms closed half the month, sales fell 38.2 percent to just $19.2 million.
But non-store retailers doubled total sales — a 106.4 percent increase to $4.8 million
Bars and restaurants were also shuttered March 17, cutting their sales 32 percent to just over $7 million.
As in the state as a whole, sales of building materials increased 23.9 percent to $13.8 million.
Douglas County fared better than most of Nevada’s 17 counties, reporting an 8.8 percent drop to $58.9 million. Sales by non-store retailers grew 123.3 percent as folks turned went online to buy, a total of $6.16 million worth of goods.
There, wales by non-store retailers was up 72.3 percent to $2.7 million.
Again, building material sales were up double digits gaining 23.3 percent to $4.48 million.
But those gains were more than offset by the closure of the county’s major resorts, and hotels causing a 48 percent decrease in food services and drinking places to $5.8 million and a 57.2 percent decrease in accommodations to $1.3 million.
Churchill County saw table sales fall 18.4 percent to $31.1 million.
The biggest hit was to auto sales, which totaled just $3.46 million, down 60.1 percent because of the closure of showrooms.
Lyon County businesses reported $52.1 million sales. That is 16.7 percent down from March 2019. Restaurants and bars saw sales drop 22.7 percent to $3.4 million. Auto sales were off 25.3 percent to $4.58 million.
Non-store retail sales were up to a total of $5.6 million, a 127.7 percent gain.
April’s numbers are expected to be significantly worse since non-essential businesses were closed for the entire month.