US Sports Betting Handle to Reach $1B; Nevada Leads The Way

We are saying goodbye to 2018 and the time has come to see the results in the gambling industry in the United States. However, the focus will be on sports betting only.

One of the biggest milestones of the year happened in May…

…when the United States Supreme court decided to allow sports wagering nationwide.

Several states used this decision and jumped right into it. These states, such as New Jersey, Delaware, Rhode Island, Mississippi and several more regulated sports wagering and got a head start. They are already collecting lots of money through taxation.

Speaking in Numbers

The leader in sports wagering when it comes to the handle is the only state which has this form of betting legalized before everyone else was allowed to regulate it – Nevada.

In November, this country set a new record in sports wagers! The state’s sportsbook took $592 million…

…therefor exceeding the highest figure from two months ago, when the numbers stopped at $571 million. Therefore, the revenue collected from sports betting was over $27 million, which is somewhere around the state average.

Popular Sports

Usually, Nevada has a strong November and it is mostly thanks to NFL and college football as well as NBA and college basketball. These sports and these leagues are the most popular among the people, in this case in Nevada, but around other states as well.

Bigger Picture

It wasn’t that long ago when Nevada was a sole state in the poor sports betting market of the United States of America. A lot has changed since then you can see list of states and the sports wagering handle for November below:

  • Nevada – $592 million
  • New Jersey – $330 million
  • Mississippi – $45 million
  • Delaware – $16 million
  • West Virginia – $12 million
  • Pennsylvania $1.4 million (two weeks)

These figures combined are close to $1 billion in sports wagering handle. You would notice, however…

…that states including New Mexico and Rhode Island are not included in spite of them having regulated a sports betting market.

Nevada’s Number Breakdown

Out of the total sum, football accommodates for 63.3 percent…

…making it more than $374 million wagered on this sport in Nevada only. This marks a jump compared to October and books held more than $18 million of the amount mentioned above.

The second most popular sport on which people love to place their bets is basketball. In November, the numbers of basketball bets surged, going over $152 million. Out of this total, the sportsbooks held more than 7 percent. Silver State collected a revenue of $11 million!

Other 10% comes from baseball, parlay and other sports. It is worth mentioning that in baseball, the Boston Red Sox completed a World Series Title run as front runners, creating a nearly $6 million loss in futures winnings for the books.

Dynamic 2019

Recently, there has been a talk regarding the federal oversight of sports wagering in the USA. However, it hasn’t gained enough traction to reach any decision regarding that matter and at this point the federal government will not have a say in state’s decisions when and how to regulate sports wagering.

More proposals such as this one are expected in 2019 with more states joining the bandwagon as well.


“Nevada Sports Betting Breaks Another Record as US Handle Nears $1 Billion in November”, Adam Candee,, December 27, 2018.

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