Nevada gaming revenues topped $1 billion in May, thanks to a big boost from the Mayweather-Pacquio fight and increased action on slot machines and table games.

The final number for May came in at $1.003 billion when the month was done. That’s a 3.3% increase over the same period last year, which is even better than it sounds.

According to a report in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, casino revenue in May, 2014 was up 8.2% over May, 2013. On the Strip that year revenues were up a whopping 17.3% that year.

Nevada’s sweet May numbers, of course, got a massive boost from the Mayweather-Pacquio fight, which brought tourists from all over the world to the Strip. Fight night lifted Nevada’s casino numbers into the stratosphere (the figurative top end of the revenue scale, not the famous hotel/casino).

According to Stifel Nicolaus Capital Markets gaming industry analyst, Steven Wieczynski, fight night was a gift that’s going to keep giving, especially to smaller casinos that don’t have the benefit of high rolling baccarat players:

We believe the second quarter is off to an encouraging start for Strip operators, particularly those less dependent on the high-end internationally sourced baccarat segment.

Additionally, we would note strength in traditionally domestically sourced games often produces healthier returns across the various nongaming segments, including lodging and food and beverage, which should benefit Strip operators’ second quarter results.

Speaking of baccarat, that’s an area where things are really not looking as good as they once did. Thanks to a crackdown on corruption in China, the number of high rolling, international whales in Vegas’ vaunted baccarat rooms is down dramatically. Baccarat revenue was down a stunning 36% over the previous year.

While May turned out to be a great month for Nevada, they can’t bank on Mayweather-Pacquio every month. That said, June’s numbers will be the ones to really watch.


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