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LAS VEGAS-The Las Vegas casino-resort industry continues to underperform relative to 2008, according to just-released June performance data from the state Gaming Control Board and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. Gaming revenue on the Las Vegas Strip was off by 14.8%, hotel occupancy was down 720 basis points and the average daily room rate dropped by 25.5%.

One relative bright spot from the standpoint of gaming revenue–the amount people lose gambling–was in Downtown Las Vegas, which raked in $45.5 million, just 5.6% lower than the June 2008 total of $48.3 million, which itself was 10% ahead of the June 2007 total of $43.9 million. The performance shrunk Downtown’s year-to-date revenue difference from 2008 to -11.8%.

Gaming revenue from the Strip–i.e. the amount of money people lost gambling there–totaled $414.5 million in June 2009, a 14.8% decline from $486.4 million June 2008, which itself was a 3% decline from June 2007. The year-to-date decline through June now stands at -15.27%. Year-over-year gaming revenue on the Strip has been negative for 18 consecutive months.

In addition to the 2008 performance dropping off as the year wore on, the narrowing of the gaming revenue decline relative to 2008 may have something to do with the fact that gamblers are betting some of their savings on room rates. The average daily room rate in June 2009 fell 25.5% to $84.50 from $113.48 in June 2008, which itself was a 16.6% decline from June 2007.

There again, maybe gamblers are saving on room rates by simply sleeping in their cars, because the average occupancy rate for hotels in June 2009 fell 690 basis points to 86.5% from 93.4% in June 2008, which itself was a 2.3% decline from June 2007. They certainly aren’t staying in the motels; the average occupancy rate for Vegas-area motels in June 2009 fell 1,300 basis points to 46.9% from 59.9% in June 2008, which was 230 basis points lower than June 2007.

Year-to-date through June, hotel occupancy is 82.7%, down 650 basis points from 89.3% for the same 2008 period, while the average daily room rate through June is $95.13, down 26.8% from $129.95 in the same 2008 period.

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