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Las Vegas Passes Pre-Recession Peaks

hamilton-zanze May 08, 2015

After years of slow and choppy recovery, Las Vegas has surpassed its pre-recession peak by all key revenue metrics except gambling, and visitor numbers have reached an all-time high.

Visitor growth was supported by lower gas prices and a drive to increase airline capacity. There were 41.1 million visitors to Las Vegas in 2014, a 3.7% increase from the year prior, according to the Las Vegas Visitors and Convention Authority.

Gambling revenue was unchanged in Q1 2015 compared to 2014, due in part to a 9.6% drop in March. However, gambling currently counts for less than 40% of total metro revenue, according to the University of Nevada Las Vegas.

Developers are optimistic about Las Vegas’ recent improved performance and are investing in The Strip despite flat gambling revenue. The anticipated sale of “Project Jackpot,” an 18-acre site next door to the MGM Grand, is being closely watched as an indicator of the city’s future performance. The price for the property — which was appraised at $750 million in 2007 — could provide an indication of how much the metro has recovered post-recession.

Read more at the Wall Street Journal

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