Nevada hit a state record for the highest sports betting handle for a single month in October. The state reported a $659.2 million betting handle last month, breaking the record set in November 2019, which was $614.1 million. The numbers are also up from September when the state saw $575 million in bets.
Nevada is known as the U.S. sports betting capital, but it is still behind the record handle New Jersey set in October. The Garden State saw $803 million in bets in October, which is the single highest month seen in the U.S.
Las Vegas and Atlantic City compete for head to head every year in the U.S. for the largest gaming market share. Las Vegas is known for its gaming, but Atlantic City has always been a close second. Now, New Jersey has passed Nevada hitting sports betting records, and Vegas can’t answer.
Nevada by the Numbers
Nevada hit an all-time mark, with $614.1 million being bet in October. Revenue surpassed $40 million and sat at $42.4 million, and the state collected $2.7 million in taxes.
Online betting is slowly increasing in Nevada and hit over 57% in October, increasing from 54% in September. New Jersey sees 93% of the bets come in on mobile devices in October. As always, football had the largest betting handle among sports at $441 million for the month. $110.7 million was bet on playoff baseball last month, and the five NBA finals games played in October attracted $37.1 million in bets.
Nevada benefited from a loaded sports schedule along with major college football conferences returning like the Big Ten. The state will continue to benefit from football next month, with over 120 college football teams playing in November. The Big Ten, MAC, Mountain West, and Pac-12 will all have a full month’s worth of games in November, along with more college football and the NFL entering the second half of its season.
How Did New Jersey Pass Nevada?
New Jersey was able to surpass Nevada in sports betting handle because of mobile betting. The coronavirus pandemic has pushed everything to online or mobile devices, which New Jersey had benefitted from. Over 90% of the bets are coming in online in the Garden State than Nevada, which has slowly adopted the new concept.
Making in-person bets has been the tradition for Nevada and Las Vegas. A majority of casinos and sportsbooks have fought the idea of mobile betting out of fear of people not showing up to gamble anymore. Although this is partially true, COVID-19 has played a huge factor in Nevada gaming revenue this year.
A majority of the revenue comes from tourism, which has seen close to 3.5 million stop travel to the state this year. This cuts into gambling revenue that the state benefits from so much. Nevada does allow mobile betting, but it does require in-person sign-up. Early on in the pandemic, it wasn’t easy to get people signed up, but it has been better in recent months.
Both states are suffering from limited capacity at 25%. In-person gaming has plummeted in 2020, but the difference this year has been online gaming and sports betting. The aura of Las Vegas has been to gamble there in-person. However, in 2020, it has taken a toll on business.