The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement reported $1.06 billion in sports wagering handle for December on Tuesday, capping a challenging 2022 during which the Garden State was supplanted by neighboring New York as the top generator of handle nationwide.
The launch of mobile wagering in the Empire State last January had many notable effects, with arguably the biggest being knocking New Jersey to No. 2 in the monthly handle pecking order, as Manhattanites no longer had to cross the Hudson in search of legal betting. Though the Garden State did surpass $10 billion in handle for the second consecutive year, the $10.9 billion in wagers accepted throughout 2022 was up less than 0.1% from 2021, with the increase a mere $8.7 million.
By contrast, New York finished 2022 with $16.3 billion in accepted wagers and now holds all of the top seven national monthly handle spots in the post-PASPA era. December’s handle marked the second consecutive month and ninth time overall that New Jersey crested $1 billion for bets placed, and it was the 25th monthly handle of at least $1 billion nationwide post-PASPA. But it was also 4.2% lower compared to November and 14.2% off the December 2021 figure of $1.23 billion that stands as the fourth-highest in state history.
Operators in New Jersey posted an 8.3% hold for December, the sixth consecutive month it was above the 7% industry standard, resulting in $87.7 million in revenue. That is the third-highest total all-time, trailing only the $114.8 million from November 2021 and $98 million in September.
State tax coffers had an inflow of $11.3 million from sports wagering for the month, lifting the full-year total to $97.9 million compared to $102 million in 2021. Overall, the Garden State is about $3.2 million from $300 million in state taxes generated from sports wagering.
Parlay revenue compensates for single-event success
Parlay revenue accounted for *checks spreadsheet* 59.1% of total revenue
Parlay handle accounted for 22.3% of total handle
— Chris Altruda (@AlTruda73) January 17, 2023
The house was once more saved by the public’s love of parlay wagering, claiming $49.6 million in revenue as the hold barely missed 20% for the fifth consecutive month. Operators won $206.8 million from parlay bets in the final four months of the year, posting a win rate of 21.2% from September through December.
However, the betting public more than held its own when not trying to combine picks. The hold on basketball wagers inched over 2.2% — the third consecutive month below 2.5% — as the house took just $7.1 million from a $315.2 million handle. To this end, the public picked up their game when it came to betting on hoops in 2022: Revenue plummeted 38.2% to $54.9 million, as the win rate was nearly cut in half to 1.8% on $3.1 billion worth of bets.
Though month-over-month football revenue surged 40.4% higher to $16.2 million, the house was kept under a 5% hold for a third straight month. Operators were limited to a 3.6% hold for the calendar year in football wagering, finishing with $70 million in revenue on more than $1.9 billion wagered.
In terms of overall numbers, the $763 million in total operator revenue for 2022 was 6.5% lower than in 2021, with the overall win rate of 7% almost half a a percentage point lower. On the plus side for operators, the monthly hold has been above the 7% industry standard for each of the last six months, the longest such streak in 55 months of wagering in the Garden State.
Online tethers to New Meadowlands finish brightly
FanDuel, PointsBet, and the SuperBook, which are all tethered to New Meadowlands in East Rutherford, combined to top $40 million in operator revenue for the fourth consecutive month at $43.1 million. Overall, the trio of books raked in $391 million for the calendar year, a 3.4% decline compared to 2021.
Resorts Digital, which counts DraftKings and FOX Bet among its mobile skins, cleared $20 million for just the third time in history at $21.9 million — $500,000 off its 2022 best of $22.4 million set in September.
What Borgata couldn’t do in person, its mobile skins could, picking up the slack for both December and the year through BetMGM and its internal online app. Borgata’s $9.4 million in revenue trailed only the $9.7 million generated in March for 2022, and it wrapped up the calendar year at more than $86.5 million — an uptick of 8.9% versus 2021.
Retail books end year on rough note
Brick-and-mortar sportsbooks across New Jersey were held below $1.9 million in total revenue, the first time under $2 million since losing more than $1.4 million in February and the third time overall in 2022. Borgata eked out a small win for the final month of the year, but it never dug out of the hole created by its monthly losses in January and February, finishing the calendar year $3.6 million in the red.
Four retail books — Caesars, Resorts, Tropicana, and Monmouth Park — all absorbed six-figure losses in December, with Caesars going under by $294,000 and Resorts by nearly $250,000. New Meadowlands accounted for more than half the retail revenue, collecting over $1.1 million in winnings as it reached seven figures for the 10th straight month following a losing month in February.
In-person revenue totaled $41.4 million for the calendar year, a drop of 45.2% from the $75.5 million in 2021 as the Borgata’s year-to-year swing was nearly $8.5 million to the negative. Monmouth Park saw a decline of $5.7 million in revenue versus 2021, while Ocean Resort also had a rough year with a $1.8 million dip to $600,000.