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AGA Commercial Gaming Revenue Tracker

Keep up to date on the latest commercial gaming revenue numbers.
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AGA Commercial Gaming Revenue Tracker

November 9, 2021

Third Quarter Gaming Revenue Tops Q2 for Highest Ever 

The AGA Commercial Gaming Revenue Tracker shows that nationwide revenue from traditional casino games, sports betting and iGaming surpassed $13.89 billion in the third quarter of 2021, marking a new quarterly record. Gaming revenue was up 53.8 percent over the COVID-impacted Q3 2020 and 24.7 percent higher than Q3 2019.

Gaming’s sustained growth since the end of the first quarter, with monthly gaming revenue not dipping below $4.4 billion since February, positions 2021 to become the highest-grossing year in the history of U.S. commercial gaming. In the first nine months of the year, commercial casinos generated $38.67 billion, passing 2020 total revenue and up 18.5 percent from the same period in 2019, the current record year.

Despite recent record-shattering performance, the casino industry has room to grow heading into the final quarter of the year with new commercial gaming markets recently opening in Arizona, Connecticut and Wyoming. Destination markets will benefit from a return of meetings and conventions and the easing of international travel restrictions.

Top Gaming States Set Quarterly Revenue Records

Consumer demand continued into the third quarter as 10 of 25 commercial casino states reported new quarterly revenue records, including the four highest-grossing states in 2019 – Nevada, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. In Nevada, the quarter also saw the highest ever quarterly gaming win for both Clark Country ($3.16B) and the Las Vegas Strip ($2.06 billion).

In Louisiana – the nation’s fifth largest gaming state in 2019 – revenue dropped by 10.8 percent from Q3 2019 as Hurricane Ida forced casinos to shutter for up to two weeks. Kansas was the only other state to see gaming revenue contract from the same period in 2019 (-1.8%).

Traditional Gaming Revenue Reaches All-Time High

With commercial casinos able to operate at full capacity, brick-and-mortar gaming generated a record $12.05 billion in quarterly revenue: a 1.7 percent sequential increase and up 11.8 percent from Q3 2019. In the first nine months of 2021, traditional casino games generated $33.27 billion – 4.7 percent ahead of the same period in 2019.

Slot revenue continued to grow at a faster rather than table games in the third quarter, expanding by 15.2 percent over Q3 2019, compared to 10.2 percent for table games, though the table game vertical set a new quarterly record with $2.49 billion. Casino slot machine revenue was flat (-0.2%) from the previous quarter with $8.69 billion generated.

At the state level, 20 of 25 states saw brick-and-mortar casino revenue match or exceed pre-pandemic levels, as only Illinois (-3.2%), Kansas (-1.8%), Louisiana (-10.8%), Michigan (-4.7%) and West Virginia (-6.6%) saw revenue drop compared to Q3 2019.

The all-time high revenue generated from traditional casino gaming coincided with a continued high level of spend per casino visit, while the rebound in visitation levels observed in recent quarters showed signs of tapering off in Q3.

Of the five states that report on casino visitation (Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi and Missouri), only Illinois saw an increase in admissions (10.5%) over the preceding quarter. Compared to Q3 2019, visitation in the five regional casino markets was down between 11.7-36.9 percent.

But as regional casino visitation stabilized in the third quarter, destination markets continued to gain momentum. Data from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority shows that 9.2 million people visited Las Vegas in the third quarter, a 14.0 percent decrease from Q3 2019 but a sequential increase of 9.7 percent over Q2 2021, and the highest quarterly visitation level since the outbreak of COVID-19.

Lower visitation continues to be more than offset by increased spending by those who do visit casinos. As the pandemic continues to limit access to other entertainment forms, consumers are allocating a larger share of recreational spend to gaming, according to analysts. Traditional casino gaming revenue per admission in the five states was up between 20.0 and 50.9 percent from the same period in 2019.

Sports Betting & iGaming Combine for $5.3 Billion in First Three Quarters

While the record performance of brick-and-mortar casino games drove overall gaming revenue to an all-time high, iGaming also set a quarterly record with the vertical growing 4.1 percent from the preceding quarter to $938.6 million.

Sports betting revenue generated $886.5 million in the third quarter, up 153.1 percent from a year ago. The limited summer sports calendar drove a quarterly low for 2021 in both revenue and handle, $11 billion compared to $13.02 billion in Q1 and $11.10 billion in Q2.

Combined revenue from sports betting and iGaming accounted for 13.1 percent of total gaming revenue in Q3 2021, level with the second quarter and down from 15.7 percent in the first quarter.

In the first nine months of 2021, iGaming generated $2.62 billion in revenue, growing 145.4 percent from the same period in 2020, while sports betting revenue reached $2.74 billion, up 306.5 percent.

About the Report
AGA’s Commercial Gaming Revenue Tracker provides state-by-state and nationwide insight into the U.S. commercial gaming industry’s financial performance. Monthly updates on AmericanGaming.org feature topline figures based on state revenue reports while quarterly reports provide a more detailed analysis covering the three previous months.