The numbers are in, and both Nevada and Colorado are on the road to recovery regarding the gaming industry. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused some substantial financial implications for each state, but it appears that things are starting to head in the right direction.
Nevada saw all of their casinos shut down for at least 78 days at the beginning of the pandemic, but most properties are now back open. Colorado attempted to launch sports betting right in the middle of the crisis, but its industry has still done well as leagues have returned.
Even though both states are still behind the projected totals, there is a chance that some of this lost revenue can be made up in the coming months. As long as the COVID-19 pandemic does not force either state to take extreme measures to stop the spread, each month should bring improvement.
July Numbers Up; Still Behind Pace
Nevada’s gaming industry has started to see a considerable increase in the total number of bets and total revenue. Those numbers are still behind last year’s pace, though. Gaming venues across the state netted more than $756 million during July, but that’s more than a 26 percent decrease from the July 2019 totals.
Even though these numbers reflect a poor month for Nevada’s gaming properties, it was a considerable improvement from June. Gaming venues in Nevada took in $567 million in June, but a handful of properties remained closed to stop the virus’s spread.
Gross gaming revenue on the Las Vegas strip was down almost 40 percent from the numbers reported in July 2019, but again it’s a significant improvement from June. Las Vegas strip casinos saw a decline of more than 60 percent year-over-year in June.
Still, Questions Facing Nevada Industry
The tourism industry is also starting to see a bounce back, but the numbers are still well below where they usually are for this time of year. With Labor Day weekend approaching, the state is hoping to see a noticeable boom in travelers.
Nevada is currently dealing with a second spike in COVID-19 cases, though, and Governor Steve Sisolak is facing pressure to shut down casinos for a second time. Sisolak has expressed his unwillingness to take this step as he recognizes the gaming industry’s importance on the Nevada economy.
The unemployment rate is still more than 14 percent, and a number of these workers are in the gaming and hospitality industry. There is plenty of reason for optimism in Nevada, but some tough times may be inevitable.
Sports Betting Taking Off in Colorado
Colorado’s sports betting industry launched on May 1st, and almost all live sporting events throughout the United States were shut down. Sportsbooks were forced to offer wagering on obscure sporting events, but they managed to post substantial numbers in the first month.
June saw another productive month as more sportsbooks started to open, but July proved to be an excellent month for the industry. Sports betting handle totaled more than $59 million during July, and that’s a 55 percent increase from June.
Colorado is home to more than 30 casinos, and each property can partner with a sports betting operator. This has brought some of the biggest sports betting names to the state, and Colorado looks poised to be an industry player.