Las Vegas Faces Unique Road to Recovery

While other parts of the country see economic improvement, Las Vegas continues to experience the deepest crisis of its modern history. Is its leisure-based economy to blame?
October 10, 2010, 9am PDT | Lynn Vande Stouwe
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Adam Nagourney finds that Las Vegas' dependency on the gambling, tourism and construction industries--sectors that have been slow to rebound from the recession -- has created a severe and protracted downturn. The city's unemployment rate is currently 14.7%, and the state of Nevada has led the country in residential foreclosures for nearly two years straight.

Nagourney suggests Las Vegas' difficulties may be part of a fundamental shift in consumer spending rather than a temporary slump:

'Economists say people are less likely to gamble as freely as they have in the past, particularly baby boomers, who may now be rattled about their retirement years. In one sign of this, while there were more people coming to Las Vegas in recent months, gambling receipts have remained stagnant.'

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Published on Saturday, October 2, 2010 in The New York Times
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