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US – New Jersey sportsbooks have best ever month in US history

By - 15 December 2020

New Jersey became the first US state in history to post a legal sports betting handle of more than $900m, as the Garden State’s online and retail sportsbooks put the first $1bn month clearly in their sights in November.

“Even if New Jersey can’t quite reach $1bn in a month before the end of the NFL season, the mere possibility so soon after the industry launched in 2018 would have been close to inconceivable until just a few months ago,” said Dustin Gouker, lead analyst for PlayNJ.com. “The restart of the US sports world after the shutdowns of spring and early summer has fuelled online sports betting in ways that would have been hard to predict before this year.”

New Jersey’s sportsbooks generated $931m in wagers in November, according to official data released Monday, breaking the previous record of $803.1m set in October and marking the fourth consecutive month the state has set an all-jurisdiction record for handle. November’s bets produced $6.2m in state taxes on $50.6m in revenue.

November’s handle rose 65.6 per cent from $562.7m in November 2019, which was then a state record. And revenue was up 53.7 per cent over $32.9m in November 2019.

Football attracted $433.3m in bets, up from $278.9m in October. Sports categorised as “other” than football, basketball, or baseball drew in $221.5m.

“When the traditional major betting sports went quiet, most of the major online sportsbooks were really good at engaging their customers with an array of offerings, from golf to table tennis,” said Eric Ramsey, analyst for PlayNJ.com. “What is surprising is that those efforts continue to pay dividends even as the major sports have returned.”

Online betting generated 93.6 per cent, or $872.1m, of the state’s total handle, which was up from 92.6 per cent in October. FanDuel Sportsbook/PointsBet topped online operators with $21.2m in gross revenue, down from $29.3m in October.

Retail sportsbooks generated $59.5m in bets, up from $59.2m in October. Meadowlands/FanDuel topped retail books with $3.6m in revenue.

“As good as the online market has been, Atlantic City has been hit hard this year by the pandemic,” Mr. Gouker said. “The state’s growth overall over the last few months is almost entirely the product of online sportsbooks. That will continue for the foreseeable future.”

New Jersey’s online casinos and poker rooms fell short of its first $100m revenue month with $91.8m in November. That was off from the record $93.5m set in October, but up 86.9 per cent from $49.1m in November 2019. November’s tally produced $13.8m in state taxes.

Online casinos and poker have generated a record $870.9m in operator revenue this year, putting the industry just short of the pace to reach $1bn for the year. The revenue has injected $130.8m into state coffers this year.

“With Atlantic City casinos struggling to remain open during the pandemic, the tax revenue generated by online casino games in particular has never been more needed,” Ramsey said. “New Jersey’s online casinos are the envy of every state with legalised online gaming and a model for any state looking to pass legislation in the coming year.”

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