New Jersey Gambling Revenue: America’s #1 Sports Betting Market
New Jersey was destined to be a leader in the US sports betting market. The industry is thriving thanks to New Jersey’s successful court case that resulted in the Professional and Amateur Sports Betting Act (PASPA) overturn and effectively made it possible for states other than Nevada to legalize sports wagering.
New Jersey finished 2020 with the highest annual sports betting handle of any state, surpassing Nevada by more than $1.5 billion in wagers placed. Will NJ stay ahead in 2021, or will Vegas come roaring back as the pandemic recedes?
We’ll keep you informed with the essential data and analysis of monthly New Jersey sports betting revenue reports. Below you can also scroll back in time to see the growth of sports betting in the Garden State. Read on for an in-depth look at the business of sports betting in New Jersey.
NJ Annual Sports Betting Revenue Totals
The New Jersey market has seen steady growth since its launch in June 2018. After recording more than $4.5 billion wagered in 2019 – the first full calendar year of legal betting – New Jersey finished 2020 as the largest sports betting market in America with over $6 billion in wagers placed. This is a full 28 percent of the entire annual US sports betting handle in one state.
|Year||Total Handle||Revenue||Hold Percentage||State Tax Revenue|
Despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the New Jersey sports betting market saw year-over-year growth of 31 percent in a record-setting 2020. Heading into 2021, NJ shows no signs of slowing down.
Latest New Jersey Revenue News
Sports Betting Dime follows all the latest updates as the market in New Jersey continues its explosive growth. Check this page to stay up to date with recent New Jersey sports betting revenue news.
July 2021 – New Jersey reports $579 million in sports wagers for July, a 25 percent drop from June and by far its slowest month in the past year. However, a “bad” month in the Garden State is still better than a great month in most other jurisdictions. Only three other states (NV, IL, and PA) have ever recorded more than $600 million in betting handle in a single month.
June 2021 – New Jersey reports $766 million wagered on sports in June, its tenth straight month with a betting handle of $700 million or more. Amidst the NBA Playoffs, basketball saw the most action of any sports for the month. Just under $191 million was wagered on hoops. Parlays were the biggest revenue driver for sportsbooks, generating $31 million in June alone. New Jersey sportsbooks have held 17.8 percent on parlays in 2021, which should serve as a warning to those seeking big returns on multi-leg wagers.
May 2021 – New Jersey bettors wagered $814 million in May. It’s the sixth time New Jersey betting handle exceeded $800 million in a month, a remarkable feat considering no other state has surpassed the $700 million mark. Baseball was the most popular sport to wager on in May, generating $316 million in betting handle, more than a third of the state’s total.
April 2021 – New Jersey reports $747 million in wagers for April, bringing the Garden State’s all-time sports betting handle to over $15 billion. New Jersey sportsbooks have now generated over $1 billion in gross gaming revenue since launching in June 2018. Through four months of 2021, New Jersey is on track to take in over $9 billion in sports bets, which would blow past its record of $6 billion set in 2020.
March 2021 – Those wondering when New Jersey will surpass the elusive $1 billion mark in monthly handle will have to wait at least another month. The Garden State saw a boost from March Madness, reporting $859 million in total wagers in March. Incredibly, this is $200 million more than any other state’s best monthly handle, but not enough to crack NJ’s best three months.
Competition is bound to get stiffer as more states legalize sports betting, but in the first three months of 2021, New Jersey accounted for 20 percent of the overall American sports betting market. A dip from its 27 percent share in 2020, to be sure, but still a very impressive figure.
New Jersey’s retail betting handle reached its highest level in over a year with nearly $80 wagered in-person. Online, FanDuel continues to be the state’s most popular sportsbook by a wide margin.
February 2021 – New Jersey’s sports betting handle dips to $742 million, its lowest in six months. The silver lining is the state is still up 50 percent from what it took in February 2020, and March Madness is just around the corner.
January 2021 – New Jersey surpasses $900 million in monthly handle for the third month in a row but falls short of its December 2020 record. The $958,717,526 in bets placed in January 2021 represents a 78% growth from the previous year.
Of note, the Meadowlands Racetrack and its two partners, FanDuel and PointsBet, were responsible for 56 percent of all New Jersey sports betting revenue for the month. FanDuel generates the vast majority of that. Further, the NBA started off the year as the most popular league amongst NJ bettors, which is somewhat surprising given January consists of the NFL playoffs and the lead-up to the Super Bowl.
Month-by-Month Sports Betting Revenue Data for New Jersey
We’re keeping track of monthly New Jersey sports betting revenue reports from the first legal bets in June 2018 to date.
The table below shows New Jersey’s sports betting handle, gambling revenue, and hold percentage, as well as state tax revenue collected each month since legalization.
For clarity, here’s what each number represents:
- Handle refers to the total amount wagered on sports.
- Revenue reflects the gross gaming revenue kept by sportsbooks after paying out winning bets.
- Hold percentage shows how much revenue sportsbooks kept as a function of the betting handle.
- State tax revenue displays taxes collected by the state and local jurisdictions.
|Month/Year||Total Handle||Revenue||Hold Percentage||State Tax Revenue|
|Total (since launch)||$17,316,337,970
To illustrate the coronavirus pandemic’s effects on New Jersey sports betting, here’s a graph displaying monthly betting handle throughout 2020.
Retail sportsbooks in NJ generated approximately $38 million in revenue in 2020, a drop from nearly $55 million in 2019. It appears that the ability to bet online allowed New Jersey bettors to find action on international sports while North American leagues were shut down in spring 2020. This may have kept the industry afloat, but clearly, the pandemic led to a few difficult months for the sports industry and fans alike.
New Jersey Market Overview
Before we get to revenue trends, let’s consider some key information to set the scene in New Jersey.
State Population (2020 Census): 9,288,994
In-state Pro Teams: New York Jets and New York Giants (NFL), New Jersey Devils (NHL), New York Red Bulls (MLS)
Market Launch Date: June 14, 2018
Biggest Monthly Handle: $996,300,794 (December 2020)
Regulator: New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement
Platforms: Online and retail
Tax Rate: 8.5 percent of land-based revenue and 13 percent of online betting revenue
New Jersey Sports Betting Revenue Trends
Aside from the small dip in spring 2020, New Jersey’s sports betting market has been trending upwards at an impressive rate.
In August 2018, DraftKings became the first online sportsbook in the country available outside of Nevada, opening up the floodgates for online sports betting across America. New Jersey has long benefited from being an early adopter of mobile betting. Having top sportsbooks such as BetMGM headquartered in Jersey City (plus FanDuel in nearby NYC) certainly doesn’t hurt, either.
Let’s explore a couple of factors that have helped New Jersey become a powerhouse sports betting destination.
The Leader in American Sports Betting
The Garden State has perhaps the most permissive set of rules and regulations for sports betting of any jurisdiction in America. A full-hearted embrace of online sports betting has paid off handily and turned New Jersey into the model for all other states to follow.
As of 2020, New Jersey’s sports betting market is the largest in the United States in terms of revenue. At its current pace, New Jersey will soon surpass Nevada in total betting volume taken since the repeal of PASPA in June 2018. This is significant and somewhat surprising as Nevada enjoyed a decades-long monopoly to build its sports gambling industry. However, Vegas was hit hard last year by casino closures and travel restrictions and should therefore rebound in 2021.
New Jersey casinos also felt the pandemic’s effects, but unlike Nevada, New Jersey doesn’t require online bettors to register in-person, a distinct advantage during casino closures and when it comes to attracting casual fans into the world of sports betting. For this reason, as well as having a much larger population and proximity to the NYC metro area, we anticipate New Jersey will retain its leading status even as Nevada rebounds and new states come to market.
Benefitting from New York’s Restrictions
Home to nearly nine million people and several major professional sports teams, the state of New Jersey is a big market in its own right. That said, there’s little doubt that NJ is a primary beneficiary of New York choosing to implement stricter rules for sports betting. Limited to betting in-person at select casinos, sports-crazed New Yorkers simply make a short drive across state lines to place their sports bets via a mobile app in New Jersey, of which there are plenty to choose from.
In 2019, more than 80 percent of bets were placed online in New Jersey. In recent months, that number has soared to over 90 percent, a testament to the convenience of mobile wagering. It’s estimated that NJ’s revenue numbers are inflated by somewhere in the realm of 25 percent thanks to New Yorkers crossing the border.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is well aware of this trend and recently declared his support for online and mobile sports betting in the Empire State. Whether or not New York online betting launches in 2021 remains to be seen, but if it does, we’ll be keeping a close eye to see if it results in a dip in the NJ market.
Learn More About Betting on Sports in NJ and Beyond
New Jersey is now the beating heart of American sports betting and looks on track to remain so for quite some time.
Online sports betting currently dominates the Garden State, so find the best online sportsbooks and apps in NJ to bet online with. Don’t be surprised if bettors flock back to Atlantic City and other retail sportsbooks as the pandemic subsides later in 2021 and beyond.
Sports Betting Dime will keep you up to date with the latest developments in New Jersey along with the best betting promos to take advantage of. For more revenue-related information, be sure to check out our state-by-state sports betting revenue tracker.