According to the American Gaming Association (AGA), commercial gaming revenue in the nation topped US$11 billion in Q1 2021 (£7.79bn/€9.08bn), the joint highest-grossing quarter ever.
The AGA’s Commercial Gaming Revenue Tracker marks a 4.1 per cent increase over the industry’s pre-pandemic performance in Q1 2019.
A strong Q1 reinforces the message of recovery from the widespread impact of Covid closures and protocols and signals that King Casino is back.
March, for example, was the highest-grossing revenue month in history for U.S. commercial gaming.
More than half of states with commercial casinos saw quarterly gaming revenue increases over Q1 2019 and several states reported record quarters.
“Today’s report shows gaming’s comeback is ahead of schedule,” said AGA President and CEO Bill Miller.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, our industry has faced numerous challenges head-on, while still reopening responsibly and providing a safe, exciting environment for customers,” he said.
Now, revenues are back to pre-Covid, Q1 2019, levels: with bricks and mortar casinos, despite pandemic restrictions, once again forming 90 per cent of revenue stream.
Q1 Sports Betting revenue for Q1 was a record US$961 million (£680.5m/€794m) — up 270 per cent, year-on-year.
Said Miller: “The gaming industry is generating these impressive results with one hand tied behind our back as capacity and amenity restrictions remain across the country.
“This is a testament to gaming’s hard work to help ensure our team members’ safety and well-being, which enabled us to reopen safely.
“We applied those same standards to our customers, whose clear pent-up demand was met by our responsible industry.”
Across 30 states, and Washington DC, almost all commercial casinos were open during Q1. Although some establishments were operating near full capacity most were running at between 25-75 per cent.