Nevada Breaks $1bn Sports Betting Handle Mark for the First Time

  • Nevada’s October handle was $1.1bn, the only state alongside New Jersey to pass the $1bn mark
  • Sportsbook revenue for the month was $48.3m and tax revenue was $3.3m
  • Most of the bets were on football and 64% of all wagers were made online
  • New Jersey hit an all-time nationwide record handle of $1.3bn in October
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Nevada sportsbooks handled over $1bn worth of sports bets for the first time in October. [Image:]

A record month

Nevada sportsbooks had a state record monthly handle in October of $1.1bn, making it the first time that the state’s sportsbooks broke the $1bn barrier. The previous record handle in Nevada was $786.5m, which was set in September. October’s handle represents a 67% year-on-year increase and a 102% jump from October 2019 figures. New Jersey is the only other state in the country to have hit the $1bn handle milestone, doing so in both September and October.

total revenue for the sportsbooks was $48.3m

The Nevada Gaming Control Board released the October figures early on Tuesday. Total revenue for the sportsbooks was $48.3m, representing a 4.39% hold. This revenue total is only the sixth-biggest the Silver State has experienced since May 2018. Tax revenue from sports betting was almost $3.3m, bringing total tax revenue for the year to over $24m.

Breaking down October’s figures

The majority of the handle came from football, with total bets of $728.6m. This was a 14% year-on-year increase. The previous football record handle was $502m in November 2020. The October football win for Nevada sportsbooks was only $29.8m, representing a 4.1% hold. In Nevada, 64% of all bets in October came through online sources. This compares to about 90% of all wagers in New Jersey coming through online sportsbooks.

Nevada sportsbooks managed to earn almost $8m from basketball, with parlays being next on the list with revenue of $4.26m. The baseball win for sportsbooks was $4.2m and the hockey win was about $1m. For horse racing betting, the racebooks in Nevada generated revenue of $2.85m for the month, which is a 10.6% year-on-year increase.

casinos had a total gaming win of $1.2bn

In terms of total gaming revenue in Nevada for the month of October, casinos had a total gaming win of $1.2bn. This is a 48.5% increase from October 2020 and was the eighth consecutive month that the state’s casinos have generated at least $1bn in revenue. Nevada last achieved this feat in May 2007. This highlights the recovery in the region this year following a difficult 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Big handles elsewhere

New Jersey remains the best-performing state when it comes to sports betting, reaching a nationwide record handle of $1.3bn in October and generating revenue of $84.2m. After New Jersey and Nevada, Pennsylvania was next on the handle list in October with $776.3m. Illinois has yet to report its results for the month; it was third in handle in September.  

One of the big reasons for the strong handle figures across the country in October was that there were five NFL Sundays during the month. In October 2020, there were four NFL Sundays. October is generally a busy time of year for sportsbooks; in addition to the NFL and college football seasons being in full swing, the NBA, NHL, and MLB seasons were also all underway.

While October was not the best month for sportsbooks in terms of win, this does not seem to be the case for November. Numerous sportsbooks have already remarked that November could be their best performing month ever becausse of favorable results over a number of NFL Sundays.

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