Nevada Boost for US Sports Betting

The fledgling US sports betting sector brought up a new record during the month of September, propelled partially by another big month for the state of Nevada. 

According to figures released by the betting regulator in the Silver State, September’s handle was the fourth-highest ever. Figures for September show a sports betting handle of $575 million, which means that the state trails only New Jersey in the US sports betting rankings, following impressive figures from the Garden State of almost $750 million during September. 

The end result is that total sports betting across the US during September hit a figure of $2.5 billion, which exceeds the previous record high of $2.1 billion, recorded in August. That figure is not even the final number as the state of Illinois has yet to submit its September figures. 

Three Billion Dollar Handle

The delay to the Illinois figures has left room for speculation, with some predictions suggesting that the total US sports betting market could pass the $3 billion mark for the month of September. 

Back in August, Illinois showed a handle of $139.8 million, dominated largely by the BetRivers operator, against a backdrop of inconsistent rules on remote registration. In order to push the total US market over $3 billion, Illinois would have to record a figure of more than $400 million, which would be significant attainment, even though both FanDuel and DraftKings have been operating in the region for a full month.

Some insight into the potential for the Illinois market in September was, however, offered by results from Australian-listed operator PointsBet. The sportsbook company, which has been operating in the state for under three weeks, recorded wagers of around $7 million during that time. 

Football Leads the Way

Sports betting revenue in Nevada passed $32.9 million for the month of September, providing a 5.7% hold for operators. That betting activity was driven by the NFL. Although the month provided the first opportunity for sports bettors to bet on all four of the major US professional leagues, the NFL led the way. Football betting made up a handle of $221.9 million during September, although that figure was significantly down on the $377.5 million handles for September 2019, a discrepancy that can largely be explained by the delayed start to some of this year’s college football conferences. 

Baseball also contributed significantly to that total. September saw the final month of regular season MLB play, leading to a baseball handle of $147.3 million. Basketball contributed $114.8 million as the NBA play-offs continued throughout the month, and the NHL also saw significant betting action, with the conclusion of the Stanley Cup propelling a hockey handle of $25 million. 

Mobile Betting Decline

Nevada’s September figures also show a significant decline in the mobile sports betting sector. The mobile market share during the month was 54.9%, which is down from a total of 64.3% in August and around 69% for July. The decline in mobile betting can largely be explained by the fact that betting customers have been more comfortable returning to physical betting locations in the state’s casinos following the slow reopening after the COVID-19 lockdown. 

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