The commercial US gaming industry had its best July ever, reaching $5.39 billion, according to the American Gaming Association’s Commercial Gaming Revenue Tracker. The figure represents a 5.9% increase year-over-year.
According to the trade association, casinos remain on pace to have their best year ever in 2023, with winnings from in-person casino games, sports betting, and internet gambling at nearly $38 billion over the first seven months of this year, 11% ahead of what they won during the same period in 2022.
However, the pace of annual revenue growth has continued to decline nearly every month since the start of the year. This deceleration is due in large part to more normalized post-pandemic annual comparisons which will persist going forward, AGA details.
Traditional casino gaming revenue performance was notably strong in July, with nationwide revenue generated from slot machines and table games reaching a new all-time monthly record of $4.4 billion. This surge in revenue was propelled by seasonal travel trends and the addition of several new physical casino properties.
At the state level, 21 of 31 commercial gaming jurisdictions that were operational a year ago and have complete data available saw gaming revenue growth from July 2022; only five jurisdictions remain behind their gaming revenue pace from the same period in 2022: Florida (-0.8%), Indiana (-0.5%), Iowa (-0.1%), Louisiana (-0.1%) and Mississippi (-3.8%).
Overall gaming revenue continues to be primarily fueled by the ongoing expansion and acceleration of online gaming, with combined revenue from online sports betting and iGaming increasing 25.2% year-over-year in July.
The rate of annual revenue growth from land-based gaming, encompassing slot machines, table games, and retail sports betting, remained steady at 2.5% in both June and July. This is a significant shift from the previous three months, during which land-based gaming growth was flat.
All in all, land-based casino slot machines and table games continue to serve as the primary drivers of commercial gaming revenue. In addition to the combined revenue record of $4.4 billion, slot and table revenue also reached all-time highs individually of $3.13 billion (+3.2%) and $976.3 million (+1.7%) respectively.
Through the end of July, combined revenue from casino slot machines and table games totaled $28.97 billion, a 3.6% increase over the same period last year, leaving the land-based casino industry well positioned for a third consecutive record revenue year.
Revenue from sports betting and iGaming continued to expand, with both verticals reporting their best July revenue levels ever as well.
Commercial land-based and online sportsbooks collectively generated revenue of $497.7 million across 27 jurisdictions, excluding Arizona, Illinois, and Tennessee. This marks an increase of 28.4% from July 2022, when commercial sports betting markets were active in 25 jurisdictions (excluding Tennessee for comparison purposes). Meanwhile, commercial sports betting revenue reached $5.46 billion, exceeding the same period in the previous year by 63.1%.
Finally, combined iGaming revenue generated in Connecticut, Delaware, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia grew 22.7% in July, reaching $481.5 million.
Notably, national iGaming revenue has declined by 9.9% from its peak in March. With four consecutive months of sequential contraction, this is the longest such pullback for the vertical since its expansion beyond New Jersey and Delaware in 2019.
The spring and summer decline in iGaming revenue may be an emerging consumer trend for the vertical: a similar pattern was observed in 2022 when iGaming revenue contracted by 7.1% between March and July, notes the association.
Year-to-date iGaming revenue stands at $3.45 billion, reflecting an increase of 22.6% compared to the same period in 2022.