Why Nevada Sports Betting Activity Took A Dip In 2020

  • Nevada has seen a drop in sports betting activity year-over-year by 19% in handle.
  • The Silver State has seen an overall decline in the market for 2020 because of the restrictions the outbreak of COVID-19 had them implement.

LAS VEGAS – The Nevada Gaming Control Board’s Gaming Commission (NGCBGC) posted the final tally for 2020’s sports betting industry in the state and the numbers saw quite a dip for the year when compared to other yearly reports.

This drop in sports wagering activity has everything to do with the Coronavirus Pandemic as it not only closed land-based sportsbooks in the state for an entire month, it also made them reopen to operate at a maximum 50% capacity for the remainder of the year in accordance with the health safety guidelines for COVID-19.

On top of that, there was the cancellation of many professional sporting events that went on for months to prevent the further spread of the virus and tourism was also limited. A lot of the activity for gambling on sports in Nevada comes from out-of-towners on vacation in the Silver State.

Plus, Nevada has been slow to gain a following for their mobile sports betting industry due to having the requirement of in-person registration that many residents find to be archaic.

The Nevada Numbers

Nevada reported $588 million in total sports wagers taken statewide for the month of December. From a month-to-month standpoint, Nevada dropped by 3.5% from November and 11% from their record high for the history of the market that was seen in October with a monthly handle of $660 million.

Land-based sportsbooks in Nevada accounted for 40% of the total activity in December with 60% coming in through mobile platforms.

December gave the state $40.6 million in revenue from the sports wagering industry that led to a 6.8% tax hold which created $2.8 million collected in taxes. Although revenue was also down month-to-month by 33%, the state managed to rank third in overall revenue collected for December nationwide.

The Overall 2020 Year For The Silver State’s Sports Betting Industry

Sportsbooks in Nevada had a win total of $262.8 million for 2020, dropping 20% from their 2019 totals. The handle brought in for CY2020 came in at $4.3 billion which was a 19% drop year-over-year.

And all of this is believed to be the collateral damage that the Coronavirus Pandemic has caused for the gaming and tourism industries which are the bread and butter for the state of Nevada. These industries are what keep their economy alive.

What’s Next?

There is no telling how 2021 will turn out for the Silver State, as COVID-19 is still very much a part of daily life. When the country starts to pull back on some of the heavy restrictions in place, Nevada could see bigger numbers for 2021 in total handle and revenue.

They are already starting off better than before with no closures of facilities and professional sports games being played.

If they end up lifting the in-person registration for mobile sports betting at any time during the year, this could help their sports wagering market immensely during the Pandemic that has proved to be the case in states with remote registration for sports betting platforms.

As for the United States sports wagering industry as a whole, November 2020 had a total handle of $3.25 billion with December’s figures not officially released in their entirety because not all states have put in their reports yet but the month has already been listed at $3.27 billion in handle, topping November.

The nation could see more and more money in handle and revenue from sports betting as more states both legalize and launch their industries in 2021. Virginia and Michigan have been the first two to go live with their online sportsbooks at the start of the new year which could lead to bigger numbers in the coming months for the country and its sports betting markets.

News tags: Coronavirus pandemic | COVID-19 | Michigan | Nevada | Nevada Gaming Control Board’s Gaming Commission | Nevada sports betting revenue | NGCBGC | Virginia

Christina Monroe

Christina has been writing for as long as she can remember and does dedicated research on the newly regulated sports betting market. She comes from a family of sports lovers that engage in friendly bets from time to time. During the winter months, you can find Christina baking cookies and beating the entire staff at Mario Kart…the N64 version of course.

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