Given an estimated $300 m shortfall in sporting wagers in June, according to analysts at PlayNJ the news was not all negative for New Jersey’s sportsbooks. PlayFutures betting and non-traditional sports helped operators escape early summer lulls in June, although online casinos and poker continued to lead the gaming industry in the State.
June’s $165 m handle had been positive news, PlayNJ said. And with baseball and the NBA season set to open late July, the reopening of retail casinos, and significant investments in online casinos and poker, the Garden State’s gaming industry is nearing better days.
Dustin Gouker, lead analyst for PlayNJ.com said: “June is typically slow for sports betting so any growth is a surprise, and it appears July will return the gaming industry to something more resembling normal.
“New Jersey will still have longer-term issues. It will take time to recover, and the gaming industry will likely be affected for as long as the world is suffering from this health crisis. But for now, optimism in the industry is growing.”
The betting handle of the state rose from $117.8 m in May by 40.1 percent to $165 m — all from online betting. June 2020 dropped 39.6 percent from June 2019’s $273.2 million.
In June, gross sales increased from May’s $9.9 m to $12.6 m, which was actually more than the $9.7 m revenue created in June 2019. Profit from June yielded $1.7 million in State taxes.
New Jersey-categorised sports as “other” than football , basketball, and baseball created a stunning $125.8 million in bets in June, up from $95.4 million in May. And bets on the three big US sports ticked up, primarily on the power of baseball and NBA futures betting ahead of the planned July return.
Eric Ramsey, an analyst for PlayNJ.com said: “The robust betting on nontraditional sports since the sports world has shuttered has been a surprise, but it will never completely make up for the loss of major sports.
“Futures will continue to gain steam, fueled by pent-up demand, as the opening of baseball, basketball, and hockey nears. If plans continue to move forward, July and August should produce a significant leap.”
When the Atlantic City casinos closed in June, online sportsbooks once again became the state’s only revenue source. FanDuel Sportsbook / PointsBet has led the gross sales market with $6.2 m , up from $4.3 m in May. “As strong as online sports betting continues to be, the reopening of Atlantic City is crucial to healing the industry, even with restrictions,” Gouker said. “It will help generate new revenue, of course. And in doing so, operators are hopeful that it will help the industry steady itself.”