IBISWorld, an independent source of industry and market research, forecasts that hotel-casino revenue will decline 2.9 percent by December as rising unemployment figures further erode household earnings. This year's disposable income figures are expected to decline by 0.8 percent, and first-quarter national unemployment figures are expected to reach 7.6 percent before climbing to 8.7 percent by the end of 2009. Figures like these are certain to impact the gaming industry. Slot machines will fare better than gaming tables, although the lack of high rollers will affect bottom lines. In 2008, gross gaming revenue for Nevada was $12.85 billion, representing relatively flat growth of 1.8 percent from the previous year. This figure is expected to decline by 3.2 percent in 2009.
"Players who have incurred major losses from financial investments over the past 12 months may pass on the high-stakes tables for the next couple of years," explained George Van Horn, senior analyst with IBISWorld. "The current 'stay-at-home' mentality and low consumer confidence will hit casinos particularly hard, making some Las Vegas gambling establishments likely casualties."