Pennsylvania celebrated the third anniversary of its regulated sports betting market in style by breaking its previous monthly handle and hitting a new milestone for its lifetime handle.
In October, sports bettors in the Keystone State spent a total of $776 million on sports wagers, recording a 47.6% surge compared to the $525.8 million wagered over the same period in 2020. Further, last month’s record-smashing handle is 34.1% higher than the $578.8 million garnered in September. Nevada and New Jersey, the leader of USA sports betting, are the only other US states to have ever recorded larger monthly handles in the nation’s history.
Owing to the shining performance in October, the lifetime handle for Pennsylvania was pushed past the $10 billion mark, making it the third US state to hit an 11-figure handle since its market debut. The $776 million handle brought PA’s lifetime handle to a whopping $10.1 billion.
Katie Kohler, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, explained PA’s record-shattering October performance as follows:
“The convergence of all that betting inventory, particularly with five weekends of football, made a record in October all but assured. Such a big leap in October shows that Pennsylvania still has an increasing base of bettors, and those bettors are placing more in wagers as they become increasingly comfortable with in-game and proposition betting. Online sportsbooks, in particular, benefit from NFL regular-season games, which offer hundreds of options for in-game betting in addition to more conventional bets. Props and in-game betting are now a cornerstone for growth.”
Sportsbooks and the State Reap Benefits of an Expanded PA Market
Looking at the monthly revenue, from a 5.4% hold, sportsbook operators in Pennsylvania produced $42.3 million worth of gross revenue last month, which is 11.6% less than the $47.8 million seen in October 2020. Additionally, October’s revenue slid by 12.1% compared to the $48.1 million generated in September and much lower than January’s record-setting $49.3 million revenue. From the gross revenue collected by PA sportsbooks in October, the taxable income produced was $23.5 million, which yielded a total of $8.4 million from a 36% tax rate for local share assessments and state coffers.
Following the release of the latest regulated sports betting numbers for Pennsylvania’s market Dustin Gouker, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, commented:
“Three years in, and the state’s sportsbooks continue to expand. Remarkably, about half of all wagers and revenue have come through sportsbooks in the last 10 months. Pennsylvania clearly has room to grow before it reaches its ceiling.”
Since the Keystone State unveiled its regulated sports betting market in November 2018, retail and online sportsbooks have generated gross revenue worth $766.8 million and $192.2 million for state coffers.
Online Sports Betting Continues to Reign Champion
As is the norm in the regulated US sports betting sector, the majority of wagers placed by PA sports bettors in October were in online sportsbooks. Overall, 92.02% of the handle or $714.1 million was produced by online sports betting platforms.
FanDuel led the pack with a $270.8 million handle, up 47.41% more than the $183.7 million the sportsbook generated in September, whereas the revenue dipped by 8.96% to $19.3 million despite the increased wagering. DraftKings was second place after handling $201.7 million of the wagers and generated $9.6 million worth of gross revenue. Rounding up the top three performers was Penn National Gaming’s Barstool sportsbook, which facilitated $71.5 million of the wagers to generate about $119K in revenue.
On the other hand, retail sports betting facilities produced $62.2 million of October’s handle, recording a 16.2% jump year over year and brought in $5.05 million worth of gross revenue. From the in-person sports betting activity performance, the Rivers Pittsburgh casino sportsbook recorded the most activity with a $9.3 million handle.
Online Casino and Poker Activity Also Shatter Records
Like sports betting, online casinos and poker rooms also blew past previous state records in October after recording gross gaming revenue worth $117.04 million. With the new record high, Pennsylvania hit a new milestone as the total revenue for the first ten months of 2021 officially hit $1.05 billion.
According to data from the PlayUSA.com Network, the Keystone State joins New Jersey as the only other US state to generate $1 billion-plus in online gambling revenue within a calendar year. The PlayUSA.com Network tracks legal online casino gaming and sports betting across different US states. New Jersey also surpassed the $1 billion mark for annual revenue in October.
From the best-ever monthly performance for online casinos and poker rooms, PA generated 58% more than the $73.7 million revenue generated in October 2020 and 4.7% more month over month. Before October, the highest revenue ever recorded in the Keystone State for online casinos and poker rooms was in May, a month when PA won $113.8 million in revenue.
For the online casino vertical alone, the wagering volume hit a historic $4.1 billion in October, $600 million more than the previous month’s $3.5 billion. Effectively, the online wagering activity garnered $102.9 million worth of taxable revenue, producing $43.3 million in local and state taxes.
Dustin Gouker, the PlayUSA.com Network, also commented about the online gambling performance in the Keystone State saying:
“Online gambling continues to thrive, while the state has a consistent and significant revenue generator. Pennsylvania taxes its online gambling industry at a higher rate than any other open market in the US, and that decision made years ago by regulators has proven to be a valuable one for the state.”