May Produces Best Month In Nearly Two Years For Colorado Casinos

Written By Hill Kerby on 07/05/2024
A blurry image of slot machines

Money flowed to Colorado casinos in May like a thawing river.

The Colorado casino industry experienced its best month of Fiscal Year 2024 and since July 2022, totaling $99.2 million in revenue.

With the strong month, casino winnings surpassed $1 billion in FY 2024Revenue is around $8.9 million ahead of FY 2023’s record pace through 11 months.

Numbers up across the board

From April’s $90.7 million, casino revenue in May grew 9.4% month-over-month. It was also 7% higher than the $92.7 million in May 2023.

These numbers show how the Centennial State has produced substantial gambling revenues at its retail casinos. Its online sports betting industry also continues to grow. Lawmakers have not legalized Colorado online casinos, leaving sweepstakes and social casinos as the only options for playing online in Colorado.

Both slots and table games were popular in May at Colorado’s casinos. 

Slots accounted for just under $85 million, the highest total since July 2022. Monthly casino revenue grew 10.8% month-over-month and 6.9% year-over-year (from $79.5 million).

Table games had their third-best month in FY 2024, making up the remaining $14.2 million. Table game revenue grew 1.4% MoM (from $14 million) and 7.8% YoY (from $13.2 million).

Revenue rises in Black Hawk and Cripple Creek

Two of Colorado’s three casino towns had significant YoY revenue growth, and all three grew compared to April.

  • Black Hawk: $75.9 million (+9.3% month-over-month; +7.1% year-over-year)
  • Cripple Creek: $16.1 million (+10.4% month-over-month; +11.7% year-over-year)
  • Central City: $7.2 million (+8.8% month-over-month; -3.3% year-over-year)

Slots revenue by town:

  • Black Hawk: $62.7 million (+10.6% month-over-month; +7% year-over-year)
  • Cripple Creek: $15.3 million (+12.7% month-over-month; 12.2% year-over-year)
  • Central City: $6.9 million (+8.9% month-over-month; -4.4% year-over-year)

Table games revenue by town:

  • Black Hawk: $13.2 million (+3% month-over-month; +7.6% year-over-year)
  • Cripple Creek: $841,000 (-19.3% month-over-month;+4% year-over-year)
  • Central City: $227,000 (+5.3% month-over-month; +46.6% year-over-year)

FY 2024 tax revenue at $157M and counting

May produced a hefty $18.6 million in taxes for Colorado casinos, bringing up the fiscal year tax bill to $157.7 million with one month to go.

That total represented 10.7% growth from April’s $16.8 million and was 6.2% better than May 2023, when taxes totaled $17.5 million.

Black Hawk casinos paid 80.1% of May’s gaming taxes ($14.9 million). Cripple Creek casinos accounted for 13.5% more ($2.5 million), and Central City casinos made up the final 6.3% ($1.2 million).

Fiscal Year 2023’s tax bill was $172.9 million. FY 2024 will break that number as long as June’s taxes exceed $15.2 million. (June 2023’s tax bill was $17.1 million).

Record pending, barring catastrophe

A year ago, Colorado casinos celebrated a record-setting FY 2023 after the state released June’s revenue report. The state’s casinos combined to report nearly $1.09 billion in revenue between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023.

Now, we await one more month of data to see if history can repeat itself. 

In this case, history should repeat itself, too. Colorado casino revenue needs to surpass $81.2 million to set another industry record.

Last June’s revenue totaled $90.1 million, around $670,000 below the FY 2023 average.

Nonetheless, the state has had more months with YoY growth than without in recent months. It’s averaged $91.7 million per month, roughly $870,000 more than in FY 2023, and will hope for another above-average month to finish the fiscal year on a positive note.

Even if a below-average month transpires, Colorado’s casino industry will have another record-setting year.

Photo by shutterstock
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Hill Kerby

Hill Kerby is a proponent of safe, legal betting, and is grateful to be able to contribute to growing the industry. He has a background in poker, sports, and psychology, all of which he incorporates into his writing.

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