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VIP Baccarat Game Play Continues to Encourage Gaming Growth in Strip Casinos

In Nevada, casino facilities saw the total amount of money won from players drop by almost six percent during the month according to the results released on June 9th, 2010, Wednesday, by the Gaming Control Board. Aside from that, most areas in Clark County and Nevada posted double-digit revenue drops compared to April last year, when gambling profits dropped by more than fourteen percent.

On the Las Vegas Strip, revenues were off by less than one percent compared to the same period in 2009. If casino facilities had been luckier in the game of baccarat, the gaming results could have been in the positive side. Analyst Joe Greff said that overall gaming results in the Strip were in line with their estimates. Greff said that they think the results were better compared with the expected number.

Frank Streshley, the head of the Control Board Tax and License Division, said that the statewide and Las Vegas Strip results show a pattern that gaming analysts have been expecting: Strip casino establishments will have a faster economic recovery compared with other casinos in the Nevada.

Streshley said that they are beginning to see a little recovery on Strip casinos but historically, Nevada casinos drops behind the overall state economy. Nevada casino facilities earned $810.4 million dollars from players in April 2010, a 5.7% drop compared to the $859.5 million dollars earned in April last year.

Gaming revenues in the Strip in April 2010 were $437.3 million dollars, a drop of one percent compared with $441.7 million dollars earned in the same month in 2009. For the first months of 2010, gambling revenues all over Nevada are up by 0.9% while the gaming revenues in the Strip improve by 7.2%.

Some gaming analysts remain cautious even with the Strip's gaming revenue improvement in April. Gaming analyst Dennis Farrell Jr. of Well Fargo Securities said that despite the Strip's stable gaming revenue results, they remain cautious since they believe that Strip operators will continue to face a rocky environment.

Other Clark County areas had bigger declines compared with the Strip in April 2010. Gambling revenues countrywide dropped by six percent while casinos in the downtown area dropped by 9.1%. Casinos in the Boulder Strip were down by 25.5% and casinos in North Las Vegas were down by 12%.

In the game of baccarat, players wagered a total of $690.6 million, which was up by 30.2% compared from the same period a year ago. Joe Greff also said that the Strip's baccarat revenues have continually support high-end establishments. He said that the month of April marked the twelve consecutive month of year-by-year improvement in overall baccarat win, which shows the power of Asian gamers.

Gaming analyst Jacob Oberman, who studies the Las Vegas gambling industry for CB Richard Ellis, said that the luxury properties in the Strip have greatly benefited from high-end baccarat game play. But the opening of the Aria-a 4,004 room hotel-casino offering of CityCenter, could draw away baccarat play from other casino facilities.

Oberman said that in the short-term, they expect baccarat revenue to continue to improve on the Las Vegas Strip. But as the rate of increase slows down in the 3rd quarter, the year-by-year improvements for the same stores will not be significant.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Reported by Kate Foster

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