Nevada Tops $1B in December Sports Betting Handle, But Revenue Sees Huge Drop

Bill Ordine

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Bill Ordine

Last Updated on 20th June 2023, 06:40 AM

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Nevada Tops $1B in December Sports Betting Handle, But Revenue Sees Huge Drop

Nevada’s sports wagering handle dipped a bit in December 2021 compared to November, coming in at just a little over $1 billion. However, December’s sports betting revenues tumbled enormously month-to-month, plummeting almost 78% to about $16 million.

Better news for the Nevada gaming industry was that, overall, the state enjoyed its 10th straight month of hitting at least $1 billion in total gaming revenue, as Las Vegas continues to battle back from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nevada Sports Betting December vs. November

Total handle

Mobile handle

Revenue

December

$1.015B

$765.000M

$15.960M

November

$1.086B

$777.178M

$71.971M

Change

Down 6.5%

Down 1.6%

Down 77.8%

Here are the highlights from Thursday’s report:

Sports Betting Handle Steady

Sports betting in December 2021 saw a handle of just over $1.01 billion, which was a 6.5% decline month-to-month from November’s $1.09 billion. Compared to the same month in pandemic-ravaged December 2020, the handle greatly improved, being up 72.5% from $588 million.

The record for Nevada was $1.1 billion in October. December was the third-straight month Nevada went over $1 billion.

Nevada is still the only state besides New Jersey to top $1 billion in handle in a month. That will soon change when New York announces its January numbers.

Nevada vs. New Jersey Sports Betting Handle

Nevada

New Jersey

Winner

December 2021

$1.015B

$1.230B

NJ by $215M

November 2021

$1.086B

$1.258B

NJ by $172M

October 2021

$1.100B

$1.303B

NJ by $203M

September 2021

$786.509M

$1.011B

NJ by $224.6M

August 2021

$427.425M

$664.676M

NJ by $237.3M

July 2021

$409.660M

$578.729M

NJ by $169.1M

June 2021

$545.368M

$766.888M

NJ by $221.5M

May 2021

$477.191M

$814.271M

NJ by $337.1M

April 2021

$458.210M

$747.987M

NJ by $289.8M

March 2021

$640.985M

$859.618M

NJ by $218.6M

February 2021

$554.058M

$742.953M

NJ by $188.9M

January 2021

$646.492M

$958.718M

NJ by $312.2M

Sport Betting Revenue Hits the Skids

While the handle was relatively steady from November, the December 2021 sports wagering revenue nosedived, coming in at about $16 million — a decline of 77.8% from November’s nearly $72 million according to figures sent Thursday by the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

As it turned out, November was an exceptionally good month for sports gambling revenue in its own right, seeing a 49% increase from October. So, being compared to terrific revenue numbers from November, the December revenue figures appeared especially anemic.

The online-retail split in handle has been creeping more and more toward the online side in Nevada. The Silver State requires in-person registration for online sports betting, and that has dampened the online side of the financial figures. However, online does keep making inroads with bettors as 75.4% of the total sports handle was from mobile wagering in December. In November, the online share was 71.6%. Prior to November 2021, the online share of sports betting was often in the 50-to-60 percent ranges.

Football Leads the Pack

Not surprisingly, football led the way in December 2021, attracting about $477 million in sports betting handle — about 47% of the total. Basketball drew about $409 million (nearly 40.5%) followed by ice hockey with $67 million in handle (about 6.6%). The category labeled “other” attracted $57 million.

Overall gaming revenue for Nevada, including casinos, in December 2021 was $1.15 billion. The December gambling revenue trailed November’s $1.32 billion but still kept intact a 10-month string of billion-dollar months. Currently there are no real money online casino options in Nevada.

On Jan. 20, the Nevada Gaming Commission approved the remote registering and funding of cashless accounts by customers. It allows casino visitors to set up spending accounts and fund them on a computer or smartphone before they get to the casino. It doesn’t apply to online sports betting registration.

Meet The Author

4 Years
Experience
Bill Ordine
Bill Ordine

Bill Ordine was a reporter and editor in news and sports for the Philadelphia Inquirer and Baltimore Sun for 25 years, and was a lead reporter on a team that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News. Bill started reporting on casinos and gaming shortly after Atlantic City’s first gambling halls opened and wrote a syndicated column on travel to casino destinations for 10 years. He covered the World Series of Poker for a decade and his articles on gaming have appeared in many major U.S. newspapers, such as the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Miami Herald and others.

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