New Jersey sportsbooks surpass $800m for first time in October

New Jersey‘s online and retail sportsbooks enjoyed their first-ever $800m month in October, setting the state on the way to the best year in terms of wagering of any legal jurisdiction. The new record represents a shocking achievement in such an unusual year, according to PlayNJ analysts.

Online and retail sportsbooks in the Garden State combined to break their own monthly all-jurisdiction record for the third consecutive month with $803.1m in bets in October, beating the record $748.6m handle gained in September and are up 64.6% from $487.9m year-on-year.

“The record-setting pace has now continued even as October’s sports schedule returned to something more resembling normal, which is a great sign for the industry’s near-term,” said Dustin Gouker, lead analyst at PlayNJ.com. “New Jersey is now clearly the standard-bearer among legal sports jurisdictions, and the state seems to only be widening the gap.”

October’s bets yielded a record $58.5m in gross operator revenue, up 26.1% from $46.4m in October 2019 and breaking the previous record of $53.6m set in January. Last month’s revenues injected $7.4m into state coffers.

Despite months of retail sportsbook closures and sports stoppages, New Jersey sportsbooks have now generated $4.1bn in bets so far this year. That puts the state on pace to surpass Nevada’s all-jurisdiction record of $5.3bn, set in 2019.

A chief reason for the consistent record-breaking, according to PlayNJ, is New Jersey’s embrace of online betting which accounted for 92.6%, or $743.9m, of October’s handle, which was up from $678.7m in September and $417m in October 2019.

“The pandemic has crystalized the difference between Nevada and New Jersey, where online betting is paramount,” said Eric Ramsey, analyst at PlayNJ.com. “New Jersey was almost certain to grow into the nation’s largest market. But with 90% of bets coming through online sportsbooks in New Jersey, it was simply better prepared for the events of 2020.”

Football generated $278.9m in bets in October, baseball added $93.9m, while basketball chipped in $28.5m.

FanDuel Sportsbook/PointsBet topped online operators with $29.3m in gross revenue, up from $25.1m in September. Retail sportsbooks generated $59.2m in bets, down from $69.8m in September. Borgata led with $1m in revenue.

“October represented a return to normal, of sorts, with a football-driven schedule spurring interest and operators announcing fresh investments,” Gouker said. “October’s results suggest a new permanent trajectory for New Jersey, with no apparent signs of letting up.”

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