2022 was a year like no other. Despite the difficulties posed by a global economic menace, Nevada managed to set a record for total gaming revenue at $12.8 billion. This figure represents an impressive 11% increase over 2021, and it is largely attributed to the growth of Strip revenues and a significant jump in December gaming activity. Let’s take a closer look at why Nevada achieved such success this past year.
The first reason for Nevada’s record-breaking year of revenue can be credited to several events that took place throughout the year. These events included the Pac-12 Football Championship game in December, National Finals Rodeo in November, and Adam Sandler’s performance at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas in October, all of which attracted large crowds from out of state. Additionally, many casinos employed successful marketing strategies to attract visitors and encourage spending while onsite. This included offering enhanced rewards programs, discounted room rates, and special promotions including food comps and cashback bonuses.
Online gambling options were also expanded for local residents looking to stay safe right when the pandemic hit. In January, Assembly Bill 86 was passed which allowed online poker games to be offered within state lines as long as they adhered to certain regulations imposed by the Gaming Control Board. Furthermore, when federal stimulus checks were issued in March many Nevadans chose to gamble some or all of their funds away instead of saving them for future use.
Even with all these factors contributing to overall increases in gaming revenue across Nevada there were still areas that experienced decreases in activity. Local gaming saw a 1 .7% decline compared with 2021 figures which can be partially attributed to smaller more remote casinos suffering financially due to reduced visitation stemming from safety concerns among potential guests as well as travel restrictions being implemented both locally and globally.
Joe Greff, an analyst at J.P. Morgan, said: “We note the unfavorable calendar impact and comparison in the month … For the month, slot win decreased 1.7 percent versus the 2019 level with handle up 9.4 percent, and slot holds down 60 basis points at 5.5 percent, vs. a 6.2 percent average the past five years.”
All things considered, 2022 was still an impressive year for Nevada’s gaming industry despite challenging circumstances presented by the global economic downtime. The combination of successful events, marketing strategies, online gambling expansion, and federal stimulus funds led Nevada to finish 2022 with total gaming revenue exceeding $12.8 billion—a record breaking total that will likely stand for years to come. 2023 looks like it could be another strong year for Nevada’s gaming industry.
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