In February of 2023, Nevada casinos continued their impressive streak of attaining at least $1 billion in winnings from gamblers. Last month’s statewide gross gaming revenue (GGR) totaled an astounding $1.23 billion, representing the 24th consecutive month that the figure exceeded the one-billion-dollar mark. Prior to February 2021, Nevada casinos had never won a minimum of $1 billion in more than eight consecutive months – a feat last achieved in October 2006 to May 2007. Michael Lawton, the senior economic analyst for the Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB), commented that achieving $1 billion in net casino win per month is now the standard for the most affluent gaming jurisdiction in the world.
The February GGR in the state saw a year-over-year increase of more than 11%, and was 22% higher than pre-pandemic February 2019, when Nevada casinos won $1.01 billion. Clark County, home to Las Vegas, has been the main contributor to the ten-digit winnings for the past 10 months, and 17 out of the last 24. In February, the county won $1.07 billion, a 14% improvement from the same period in the previous year.
The Las Vegas Strip, the most significant segment in the state’s gaming industry, reported a February GGR of approximately $712.5 million, a jump of almost 19% compared to the same period in 2022. There is much interest in whether the Strip can reach the $1 billion mark on its own, and it came close in December when the GGR on S. Las Vegas Boulevard topped $814.1 million.
Despite the current economic uncertainty, Nevada casinos appear to be unaffected, as they have maintained their record gaming win amounts over the past two years. However, reservation management platform SevenRooms, which assists many prominent casino operators with their resort bookings, has warned that US travel and leisure bookings are decreasing, along with the number of no-shows and cancelations.
Las Vegas’ primary commercial air hub, Harry Reid International Airport, saw a record number of passengers in February, with over 4.2 million travelers processed. This represented a 25% increase from February 2022, mainly due to the return of major conventions and exhibitions, and the lifting of “zero-COVID” in China, allowing mainlanders to travel internationally. In total, the airport handled 203K foreign passengers and 3.9 million domestic travelers, a 22.5% year-over-year growth.