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Following a relatively dormant couple of months, Pennsylvania sports betting showed significant signs of recovery in July. 

Handle from players in this vertical rose by over 80% month-on-month, while revenue also enjoyed an upward curve. 

To welcome back the return of various sporting competitions, figures suggest that operators held various promotions to bring customers back into the fold. 

The success of online betting in Pennsylvania last month helped to offset land-based casino figures, which for the most part were understandably lower than last year. 

Sports betting on the road to recovery 

July saw the return of the NBA, MLS and MLB seasons – and fans’ enthusiasm showed. $164.8 million was wagered over the whole month, which was 85.1% higher than had been the case in June. Online sports betting was responsible for most of the state’s operators’ handle figures, with $155.4 million (84%) coming from mobile and desktop devices. 

Sports betting operators in Pennsylvania reported $13.7 million in revenue, which was 71.5% more than in the previous month. 

It’s also worth noting that the three above mentioned leagues only returned in the final few weeks of July. Therefore, August and September (especially factoring in the NFL’s return) could be even more prosperous. 

Sportsbooks in the Keystone State also wrote off $5.5 million in promotional credits last month. Most of these came from the two biggest operators in Pennsylvania; FanDuel used $3.2 million of the above figure, with a further $1 million coming from DraftKings. 

Pennsylvania’s gambling industry is, in general, in a much better position now

In all verticals and across both online and offline platforms, regulated betting in Pennsylvania brought in $283 million in total gaming revenue. Promisingly, this was slightly higher – 0.5% – than had been the case in July 2019 ($281.5 million). 

Online slots, table games and poker brought in $54.4 million last month. 

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, “a significant amount of business has shifted from casinos to online platforms in the last year”. This isn’t overly surprising, since the industry was going that way anyway. However, the last few months, limited casino capacities and players having safety concerns will all have played significant roles in accelerating this. 

Retail slots revenue across the state was down by 17% year-on-year, with that percentage rising to 32% for table games based in retail casinos. 

Only three of Pennsylvania’s 12 land-based casinos reported an annual rise in retail slots revenue. One of these was Parx Casino in Bensalem, which brought in $59.9 million from these means. That was 14.4% more than had been the case a year ago. 

New Jersey sports betting is enjoying better revenue figures, but is that because of New Yorkers crossing over to play? 

Pennsylvania’s sports betting handle figures were respectable, considering everything going on at the moment. However, it was dwarfed by New Jersey – where players wagered just over $315 million on sports last month. 

However, the gap could be explained in part by New York’s continued shutdown of land-based casinos. While tribal casinos have been able to reopen, commercial ones have not. Thus, the Empire State’s already-sluggish sports betting industry has been further hindered for no fewer than five months. 

Even before the world spun into disarray, it’s believed players from New York wagered $837 million in the Garden State last year. 

In 2020, New Jersey sportsbooks have so far taken $1.9 billion in bets. Comparatively, that figure stands at $1.2 billion for Pennsylvania. 

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