New Jersey Closes 2018 with $1.24 Billion in Sports Betting Handle
Legalized sports gambling in New Jersey was a booming business for casinos and racetracks, as well as the state government in 2018. According to the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, $1.24 million was wagered in the state last year, generating between $5.26-$8.06 million in tax revenue for the Garden State. (Note: Tax revenue based on 8.5% tax rate for bets placed in-person at licensed racetracks and Atlantic City casinos and 13% for online and mobile wagers.)
Both those figures are expected to see increases in 2019, according to Alex Donohue of US-Bookies.com. “The first six months of wagering in New Jersey proved to be profitable for casinos, racetracks, and the state government. Trending data showed consistent and expected growth month-over-month. With a full 12 months and resources such as Bet-NJ, 2019 betting figures will certainly exceed 2018 gambling numbers for New Jersey.”
Figure 1 shows the steady increase in wagering in New Jersey in the six months of legalized gambling. It clearly shows that people – Garden State residents and visitors – rushed to the nearest sportsbooks for a chance to win big.
Blistering Start and Hotter Finish
NJ-based sports gambling commenced June 14 when Governor Phil Murphy visited Monmouth Park racetrack and placed $20 each on Germany to win the World Cup and the New Jersey Devils to win the Stanley Cup. Eager bettors followed suit to the tune of $16.4 million in betting handle from that day to June 30.
The first summer of sports betting continued with consistent increases in handle. Mobile sports gambling escalated in August, when DraftKings, the first available online sportsbook in New Jersey, officially launched. SugarHouse, FanDuel, and others closely followed. The sudden availability of online sports gambling in the Garden State led to $95 million in wagers being placed in August. In fact, one report noted that online and mobile platforms were responsible for $21.7 million of August’s wages.
Wagering in New Jersey continued to grow with the kick-off of the professional and college football seasons. September noticed the largest monthly increase in sports gambling handle, almost doubling the amount bet in August, with the trend continuing through October and November.
“The November spike was likely due to Thanksgiving. With most Americans off from work and enjoying the yearly tradition of all-day televised football, many New Jersey residents took to betting to make the games more interesting. This is similar to a trend in the UK, in which Boxing Day – celebrated on December 26 and the busiest day for televised sports in Great Britain – notices significant spikes in betting interest. From this occurrence, we can gather that similar holidays will yield increases in money wagered,” said Donohue.
Betting Benefits NJ Economy
Increased wagering provides significant economic benefits. The millions New Jersey received by taxing sports bets made in-state is typical and represents an opportunity for other states considering legalized sports gambling. Americans have previously taken their gambling interest overseas. Legalization provides a convenient outlet that keeps the money on-shore, generating tax revenue that would be otherwise nonexistent.
In fact, a 2017 Oxford University report found that regulation of sports gambling in the U.S. would contribute $11.6-$14.2 billion in annual GPD, depending on the states that legalize and their respective tax rates. As the demand for online betting grows, jobs will be created to provide gamblers with the outlets they need. When more states begin to regulate sports betting, they will see increased opportunities and growth.
US-Bookies as a Resource
The rise in monthly betting handle indicates that sports gambling is becoming increasingly popular in New Jersey now that it’s been legalized. Recognizing this, Better Collective began building its network of state-specific wagering websites through its US-Bookies hub. With Bet-NJ.com as the first of many, these websites will connect users with the best legal sportsbooks, through strategic partnerships that provide exclusive benefits for gamblers when accessing these sportsbooks from the US-Bookies network.
Websites in the US-bookies network aggregate sports betting, horse racing, politics, gambling legislation and online betting data related to each state. Step-by-step guides for how to place bets and wager responsibly are part of the network sites, as well. In addition to Bet-NJ, other sites in the network are Bet-PA and Bet-WV. As more states legalize sports gambling, additions to the network will follow.