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How Gaming Benefits Nevada

Overview of the Tourism Industry's Employment Impacts

Prior to the COVID-19 health crisis and related response, the tourism industry directly employed 278,800 workers in Nevada. However, the impacts of the industry are more far-reaching than just employment in the resort properties. Retail, food and beverage and other industry-related positions are beneficiaries of the industry and its employees. Indirect impacts, those secondary impacts attributable to purchases made by the industry’s suppliers, reached 66,100 employees. While induced impacts, those sourced to purchases made by employees who work directly for the tourism industry, supported 88,400 employees. In total, the tourism industry supported 433,400 jobs.

Emloyment Impacts

278,800 Direct
66,100 Indirect
88,400 Induced
433,400 Total

Nevada's Leisure and Hospitality Employment

Leading up to fiscal year 2020, Nevada’s leisure and hospitality sector had maintained its employment growth, reaching a peak of 360,300 employees within the industry in July 2019. The leisure and hospitality sector has historically employed over one-fourth of the state’s total workers. As a result of this dependency, the sector’s employment was impacted the greatest when the COVID-19 health crisis effectively put a global travel ban in place and the state was required to close all non-essential businesses. These closures and drop in travel resulted in the sector’s lowest level of employment since 1993. With businesses forced to temporarily close, job counts suffered. This resulted in the nation’s highest unemployment rate, impacting a high of 30.1 percent of the workforce. As businesses were able to reopen, the unemployment rate edged down to half of its peak during that time and ended the fiscal year at 15.2 percent.

Nevada Establishment-Based Employment and Unemployment Rate

Employment Indicators FY '10 FY '20 Growth
Total Employment 1.12 M 1.27 M +13.4%
Leisure & Hospitality Employment 313.6 K 301.5 K -3.9%
Leisure & Hospitality Employment Share 27.9% 23.8% -4.1
Unemployment Rate 13.5% 15.2% +1.7%

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics; Not Seasonally Adjusted. Note: Fiscal years represented.

Diversifying Employment

By the end of fiscal year 2020, the sector reported 12,100 fewer jobs than a decade ago as a direct result of the COVID-19 health crisis. Furthermore, as was mentioned before, the tourism industry supports 433,400 jobs within the state; this equates to roughly 3 out of every 10 jobs that are supported in some way by the tourism industry. Although net employment throughout the state remained above where it was at a decade ago, it is clear the leisure and hospitality sector continues to face challenges as a result of the heath crisis and related response.

Nevada Employment Growth (Net) by Sector Fiscal Year 2010 vs. 2020

Nevada Employment Growth (Net) by Sector