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The State of Pennsylvania Keeps Rolling

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The State of Pennsylvania Keeps Rolling
The Monmouth Park Sports Book (Photo by Dominick Reuter / AFP)

It is hard to believe that it was just a few short months ago that the sports and sports betting world were in a holding pattern, waiting on COVID-19 to run its course. The virus hasn’t gone away but the concern over the viability of the legal sports betting scene in the US certainly has.

Pennsylvania is the latest state to report a record sports betting handle for the month of October. Pennsylvania became just the third state in the US after New Jersey and Nevada to eclipse a half-billion in handle for one month in October. It also surpassed $4 billion in total handle since sports betting became legal. Both are fitting gifts for a Pennsylvania platform that celebrated its two-year anniversary on Tuesday.

More on the Monumental Figures

Pennsylvania’s 12 casinos with sportsbooks brought in a record $525.8 million in October which represents a modest 13.6% rise from the previous high of $462.8 million handle from September. Four months into the 2020/2021 fiscal year, Pennsylvania bettors have dropped an estimated $1.5 billion at the state’s sportsbooks.

Revenues followed suit, setting records as well. Gross taxable revenue came in at $47.8 million for October which, after subtracting $11 million in promotional credits was a still record-$36.8 million. That number represents an enormous increase from the $6.2 million in revenues Pennsylvania sportsbooks took in during September and an impressive besting of the $22.8 million previous record revenue haul from January.

The state collected a much-needed $12.5 million from sports betting taxes in October 2020, with another $736,000 for local taxes.

Year-over-year, Pennsylvania sportsbooks October 2020 handle of $525,802,524 was an increase of 118% from October 2019, when it was just $241.2 million.

What About the Mobile Handle?

Pennsylvania continues to lead the way in the US in terms of their mobile sports betting platform. Consistently one of the top performers in the country, Pennsylvania’s betting apps were responsible for $472.3 million of the $525.8 million handle, or 89.8%. That represents a 14% increase from September’s $414.1 million mobile haul.

At nearly 90%, Pennsylvania continues to be one of the most effective and lucrative mobile betting platforms in the Nation.

The Perfect Pennsylvania Storm

The flurry of activity both in the sporting world and the Pennsylvania sports betting scene is equally responsible for the state’s impressive monthly totals. The Pittsburgh Steelers are in the midst of a historic campaign, the Philadelphia Eagles are still somehow in a playoff chase. the Pennsylvania industry itself, buoyed by all of the big names in the legal sports betting space, including Barstool is as healthy as any in the nation.

“Local interest is a clear factor in the swell in betting this fall, pushing Pennsylvania to a record with a sports schedule in October that more resembled normal than any since March,” says Play Pennsylvania lead analyst said Dustin Gouker. “Pennsylvania could conceivably catch Nevada in a matter of months to become the nation’s No. 2 market, especially if the Steelers continue to roll and the Eagles can somehow make a playoff run to spike local interest,” he adds.

Records Being Shattered Everywhere

The Northeast has become the National hotbed of legal sports betting. We need not look further than the combined handles of two neighboring Northeastern states to prove the notion, Pennsylvania’s $525.8 million October handle combined with New Jersey’s National record $803 million takes the two-state total to an astounding $1.38 billion – for one month!

Indiana reported a record handle for the month of October, as did Iowa among the few states that have released their October sports betting figures so far.

Pennsylvania maintained it standing as the third most bet-friendly state in the US but is creeping up on second-place Nevada. With COVID lockdowns rearing their ugly heads again and with brick-and-mortar facilities on The Strip in danger of devastation once again, Pennsylvania’s overtaking of Nevada could come sooner than later. At this time next month, we could be reporting on a new #2 in the US legal sports betting industry.