Casinos in the United States have experienced the best quarter in their history in Q3 of 2021, reports suggest. Revenue reached almost $14 billion between July and September, as the industry rallied well following the uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic.
These figures — which exclude Native American-run casinos — mean 2021 has already surpassed the total revenue achieved in the whole of 2020, reaching $39 billion, with another quarter still to come. The industry is on track to break the full-year record of $43 billion, which was set back in 2019 — the last pre-Covid year of trading.
One of the key factors behind this seems to be that patrons are becoming more comfortable with the idea of gambling in a physical environment once again. The restrictions placed on businesses during the pandemic made it difficult for physical casinos to operate, and many closed for long periods of time. Even after restrictions began to ease, many customers were understandably reluctant to return to these spaces. The latest figures indicate that this trend is reversing.
The Role of Online Gambling in United States Casino Success
However, this would only account for a temporary spike in casino profits. If the upturn is to be more profound and long-lasting, there need to be other factors at play. This is where online casino gambling and online betting are playing a major role in the United States. As internet-based gambling becomes more popular and more viable, casino brands are finding ways to diversify their product range and shore up their businesses against catastrophes in the future.
Some analysts have even suggested that the pandemic and its restrictions have in fact sown the seeds for long-term growth. Jane Bokunewicz, director of Stockton University’s Lloyd Levenson Institute, said that the Covid-19 restrictions have opened up casino gambling to a new audience.
“The explosive growth of internet gaming during the pandemic engaged a new audience of consumers,” Bokunewicz said. “Encouraged by casino marketing and loyalty programs, they may have decided to try something new.”
Some Sectors Continue to Struggle
This success has not been mirrored across every sector in the online gambling landscape. United States sports betting has struggled in 2021, with states such as Mississippi, Arkansas and Michigan seeing month-on-month revenue slumps of more than 30% between March and April. While it is usual for sports betting providers to experience a seasonal profit dip over the summer, a decline so early in the year sent ripples of concern through an industry still reeling from Covid-19.
We’re not out of the woods yet. The disruptions of Covid-19 and the associated restrictions have made life very difficult indeed for gambling firms across the United States — and indeed across the world. However, the exemplary performance of the casino sector certainly provides a ray of hope. It could still be a case of building back stronger and better than ever for physical and online betting in the USA.