Pennsylvania Sports Betting Tops $5bn Handle in 11 Months

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Though receding tides of Pennsylvania sports betting resulted in a 7% decline, May pushed the yearly handle to the $5 billion mark. Still, there’s one month left in the fiscal year. Despite a drop in handle, sportsbook revenue reported a 5.5% increase from April.

According to monthly figures released Thursday by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, the state’s sportsbooks took in $447.4 million in total bets in May, representing a 6.7% dip from April’s $479.4 million. However, last month’s total was a 477.3% rise from what the Keystone State had reported ($77.5 million) during the same period last year.

January had seen the state record in a single month when Pennsylvania sports betting registered $615.3 million in handle.

Revenue Details

Another bright side of the report was the gross sportsbook revenue that increased nearly 5.5% to $27.7 million in May from $26.3 million in April. It was a whopping 474.6% gain in the year-over-year comparison.

The revenue gain of $1.4 million was thanks to a healthy 8.4% hold rate for May, according to the report. In April, the hold rate was 7.5%.

Pennsylvania sportsbook had reported $37.4 million in revenue and dished out $9.7 million in promotional credits last month.

The state generated $9.4 million in taxes from the sports betting industry last month, in addition to $555,000 earmarked for local entities.

Online Betting Follows a Traditional Path

Since Pennsylvania online sports betting launched in May 2019, most bettors have preferred mobile betting. In May also, online betting accounted for 91% of the total handle.

But just like the total handle, online sports betting numbers dipped in May to $407.4 million, from $439 million in April. Yet again, the year-over-year rise was notable as the Pennsylvania online sportsbooks had reported just $77.5 million for May 2020.

Who Reigns in Pennsylvania Sports Betting?

FanDuel – along with its Valley Forge Casino partner – continued to lead the Pennsylvania sports betting market with $163.5 million in handle in May, and with a revenue generation of $17.9 million – nearly 48% of the total sports betting revenue for the month. The New York-based operator attracted nearly 40% of all digital bets last month.

DraftKings took the second spot in the Keystone State’s sports betting market by reporting $101.4 million, or a 23% market share. The Boston-based sportsbook generated $3.9 million in revenue.

Barstool Sportsbook was the distant third with $43.6 million in handle, and a gross revenue generation of $2.8 million. Its market share was 10%.

BetRivers – through the Rivers casinos – amassed $43.4 million for the month.

BetMGM claimed the 7% market share, though the sportsbook dished out $1.9 million in promos to woo customers in a relatively new market.

Pennsylvania Handle Reflects Unpredictability in the Market

The Keystone State’s latest report suggests an unpredictable market situation. Just a day ago, New Jersey sports betting reported a 9% rise in its handle for the same period that brought a 7% decline to Pennsylvania sports betting.

So far, seven other states – including New Jersey – have reported their monthly figures amid a spring slump. The results have been uneven, with four reporting rising handle, while three witnessing declines.

However, Pennsylvania sports betting’s 477% year-over-year increase represents one thing with certainty: that market is going in the right direction.

Particularly, online sports betting in the Keystone State has given an undiminished boost to the industry, which is not very old, and yet not less formidable when competing at the national level.

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