You could have bet this was going to happen.
New Jersey’s online and retail sportsbooks drew $1.3 billion in bets in October, easily topping September’s record handle of $1.01 billion by 28.9%, according to official reporting released Wednesday. October’s betting volume was up 62.3% from the $803.1 million generated in October 2020.
The high betting volume led to a new record in gross gaming revenue, too. Sportsbooks won $84.2 million in October, up 43.8% from $58.5 million in October 2020 and up 2.1% from $82.4 million in September. October’s revenue topped the previous record of $82.6 million set in January and yielded $12.7 million in state taxes.
“Sports betting in particular has swelled with the start of the NFL season and realized another month of over $1 billion in handle — exceeding September 2021 with $1.3 billion for the month,” Jane Bokunewicz, faculty director of the Lloyd D. Levenson Institute of Gaming, Hospitality and Tourism at Stockton University said. “October 2021’s record sports wagering handle proves that September was not a ‘flash in the pan’ but rather the first sign of a new level of sports betting participation — at least during the NFL season.”
Five full weekends of NFL and college football were a boon for sportsbooks, boosting football betting to $499 million in October from $400.8 million in September. The start of the NBA season helped pour another $156.9 million into sportsbooks from basketball and baseball’s postseason ($127.1 million) and spurred significant action, too.
“Five weekends in October meant an unusual amount of NFL and college football to bet on, and plenty of free time for gamblers to visit Atlantic City, making fresh records inevitable,” said David Danzis, an analyst for PlayNJ.com. “But what will have a longer-lasting effect is if the market for sports betting and online gambling continues to expand while Atlantic City continues to recover following the pandemic. That combination is producing some jaw-dropping results.”
“With so much to bet on in October, state records for wagering are falling in every major legal sports betting market in the U.S.,” said Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayNJ.com. “New Jersey separates itself because bettor enthusiasm for the NBA outstrips most every other market, which pushes its ceiling during a month like October to heights that were once unreachable in the U.S.”
Online sportsbooks took in $1.2 billion in wagers, accounting for 90.5% of the state’s handle in October. FanDuel/PointsBet/SuperBook continued their dominance of the online market, with $39.6 million in gross revenue, up from $36.6 million in September.
New Jersey joined Pennsylvania as the first U.S. states to take in more than $1 billion in gross gaming revenue from online casinos and poker rooms in a single year, with a record $127 million in October. That topped the previous record of $122.6 million set just last month, and was up 35.9% from $93.5 million in October 2020.