Gaming win falls, but shows some positive signs | NevadaAppeal.com
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Gaming win falls, but shows some positive signs

Gaming win fell 9 percent in September from the previous year, the 21st straight month of declines for Nevada casinos.

But Gaming Control Board Analyst Frank Streshley said there were some good signs – including that the drop wasn’t double-digit.

He said September is the first month since March with a win above $900 million. The total came in at $911.1 million.

That total was boosted by a nearly 4 percent increase in game and table win compared to September 2008 – primarily because of foreign high rollers playing baccarat in Las Vegas. Without baccarat, game and table win would have been down more than 12 percent.

Slot play didn’t fare as well, falling 14.8 percent to $583 million out of a total of $9.1 billion wagered.

Streshley said some of that high end play was drawn to town by the Mayweather-Marquez fight Sept. 19.

“We’re seeing a rebound there but there’s going to be a lag between the Strip recovering and local markets recovering,” he said.

The Carson Valley Area, which includes Carson City and valley casinos in Douglas County, reported a 4 percent drop to $8.1 million – much better than the 17 percent drop reported in August.

While September was the second single-digit drop in a row, every reporting area in the state was still down from its win a year ago. In addition, every reporting area in the state is down for the first quarter of the fiscal year.

North Lake Tahoe casinos were down the least of any area in the state – just a third of a percent to $3.04 million. That is the smallest decline at North Shore since December 2007. Slot play at Crystal Bay was actually up 2.7 percent but game and table win was down more than 10 percent.

South Lake Tahoe saw total win drop 10.88 percent as a 20 percent drop for slots completely erased a 26 percent increase in game and table win. The total win was $21.8 million.

Washoe County casinos suffered a 6.4 percent decline to $72.1 million for September. Most areas of Washoe saw much smaller reductions but Reno was down almost 8 percent.

Even Elko, which avoided significant damage through most of the recession, was hard hit in September seeing a 7 percent drop to $22.4 million.

The state collected $54.3 million in fees for October based on September casino revenues. That is 14.6 percent less than a year ago – just under $9.3 million for the month. For the first four months of the fiscal year, that puts total collections $22.26 million behind collections for the prior year.