Massachusetts Sees Highest Gambling Revenue in April Since Pandemic

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Massachusetts’ casinos have reported their best revenue figures for the last month since the pandemic-led closures began last March. According to data released Monday by Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC), nearly $85 million in gross gaming revenue (GGR) from the state’s two casinos and a slots parlor in April was the largest monthly number since Feb. 2020. It also represented a slight improvement from the $84 million in GGR reported in March, the first month to show pandemic recovery.

The Bay State generated more than $24.16 in taxes in taxes, the largest amount the state yielded from its three gaming licensees since Feb. 2020 when the casino industry amassed more than $24.32 million in state taxes during the last month before COVID-19 restrictions were put in place nationwide.

Plainridge Park Casino

The slots parlor at Plainridge Park Casino, MGM Springfield, and Encore Boston Harbor posted a combined total of $84.63 million in GGR in April, nearly $673,000 more than reported in March.

The players put $169.68 million into the gambling machines at the Plainville slots parlor in April, allowing the establishment to keep 7.38% of all slot wagers, and causing $12.52 million in gross monthly revenue, the highest figure for the harness racing track and slot machine parlor since July 2019.

That revenue generated more than $6.13 million in state taxes, with a 49% deduction rate.

MGM Springfield

MGM Springfield, which set a record in March, totaled nearly $204.1 million in April. The casino kept 8.65% of that or $17.65 million in slot revenue. After adding $4.28 million in table game revenue, the first resort casino in the Commonwealth reported over $21.93 in gross gaming revenue in April.

The State of Massachusetts drew nearly $5.48 million in taxes from MGM Springfield last month.

Encore Boston Harbor

However, the lion’s share of Massachusetts gaming revenue was drawn from Encore Boston Harbor. Wynn Resorts-owned luxury resort and casino generated more than half of the Bay State’s GGR last month, or $50.18 million.

Of that, $29 million came only from its slots, into which gamblers put more than $336.1 million. Another $21.19 million in GGR was the fruit of table games played at the casino last month. The establishment located at Everett churned out nearly $12.55 million in tax revenue for the state in April.

How Have We Reached Here?

Since legalizing gambling in 2011, the Bay State has generated more than $767.21 million in gaming revenues. Of this cumulative GGR, Plainridge Park accounts for $420.39 million, MGM about $141.87 million, and Encore Boston Harbor almost $204.95 million.

Massachusetts casinos were shut down in March 2020 amid the pandemic and were allowed to open months after in July under strict capacity limits.

Future Expectations

The Bay State expects nearly $252 million in average annual gaming revenue based on previous monthly averages.

A slightly less optimistic projection was made by the Executive Office of Administration last month when it said the fiscal 2021 budget expects the state will raise $226.2 million for the budget year ending June 30.

The casinos in Massachusetts have been open for nine-and-half of the 10 months of fiscal 2021 year, allowing the state to collect nearly $184.87 million. If the remaining two months follow the monthly average of almost $21 million, the state would achieve $226.87 million in GGR this fiscal year.

The three casinos have been operating since July under strict occupancy limits, which may be lifted by May 29 following the governor’s announcement. However, the Gaming Commission will decide on its own to finalize changes for its licensees. The commission is expected to meet on Thursday.

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