Nevada Casinos Win $826.9 Million In April

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Nevada casinos had a record April, winning $826.9 million from gamblers for an 11 percent increase over the same month a year earlier, the state Gaming Control Board reported Tuesday.

The April win brought the total for the fiscal year to date to $8.35 billion lost by gamblers in slot machines and at card and dice tables. That's up 5 percent compared with the same period in the previous fiscal year.

State revenues based on the fiscal-year total amount to $622.3 million. That's 6.9 percent above a May 2003 forecast by the state's Economic Forum.

"April's gaming numbers, combined with the previous encouraging three months, demonstrate the strong resurgence of our gaming and tourism markets," Gov. Kenny Guinn stated.

But Guinn noted this April was measured against a soft April 2003, when tourist traffic slumped at the start of the war in Iraq.

Only two major Nevada markets were down this April - North Las Vegas with an 8 percent decline and the Boulder Strip which was down 1 percent. Several double-digit gains were posted, including the Las Vegas Strip, up 14.8 percent; Laughlin, up 13.6 percent; Sparks, 14.4 percent; and the Carson City-Gardnerville area, up 16.4 percent.

The Stateline area on Lake Tahoe's south shore was up 12.1 percent - and casinos on the lake's north shore were up 40.5 percent.

The Control Board's Frank Streshley said there was concern that rising gasoline prices might hurt some areas, "but it didn't happen. We're just seeing a continued resurgence in the economy."

The win is what was left in casino coffers from $12.2 billion bet by gamblers during April. "Win" is a gross figure, with no operating costs or other expenses deducted. And it's casino revenue only - separate from hotel, restaurant or bar revenues generated by the resorts.

The $826.9 million statewide win during April included $567.5 million from slot machines and $251.9 million from table games.

Games that produced the most revenue included blackjack at $100.8 million; craps at $34.3 million; and baccarat at $27.8 million. Poker games won $7.6 million.

Dollar slots won $99.7 million; quarter slots won $158 million; nickel slots won $108.5 million; and multidenomination slots won $126.8 million.