The baccarat slump brought down revenue for the fiscal year down 1.6 , according to numbers released by the Nevada Gaming Commission and reported on by the Las Vegas Review Journal.
Over the past few years baccarat has been a serious cash cow on the Strip and has consistently ranked as the top earning table, ahead of more mainstream table games like blackjack. Most of that growth came on the heels of an influx of newly rich Asian whales who toss cash freely in elaborate baccarat parlors the general public will never get to see.
Unfortunately for Vegas whale hunters, a crackdown on corruption in China has put a damper on the Vegas baccarat party. Last quarter baccarat brought in just $ 64.7 million to Las Vegas casinos. That’s down 53.7% from the previous year.
The baccarat bust isn’t the only bad news coming from the Vegas Strip this fiscal year. Taking baccarat out of the picture, Las Vegas casino revenue would still be down about 3% for the month of June and down 1.6% for the first six months of 2015.
Analysts suggest that Vegas’ trouble with the popular game is part of a worldwide trend that’s having a major impact on any property – land-based or digital – where Asian whales congregate.
Fortunately for the city of Las Vegas, most Strip resorts have very diverse revenue streams that rely much less on gambling than they once did. J.P. Morgan gaming analyst Joe Greff explained to the press why Vegas will probably be all right, despite the baccarat slump saying:
Overall, we continue to think the Las Vegas Strip can generate low-to mid-single (revenue per available room) and visitation growth, though we expect the market to continue to experiencing volatility in baccarat play given a likely slowdown in Chinese player.
All told, the State of Nevada brought in around $ 48.7 million in gaming taxes for the month of June.
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