Online sports wagering in June 2020 continued to shake off the cobwebs and dominate a Pennsylvania gaming industry still trying to overcome the effects of the enforced global pandemic shutdowns to both the bricks-and-mortar casino industry and the related closures of major U.S. professional sports.
However, the great news is that the Keystone State’s sports betting action rose even without major leagues playing. In the official figures released by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB), the sports wagering handle hit almost $89 million in June, up a neat 14.8% from the May numbers and a 93.4% increase on the April 2020 figures. The revenue raised for June hit a handy $8 million, coming in at 8.9% of revenue. While any growth should be welcome and considered to be a bonus without any major pro or college sports in operation at all, Pennsylvania’s numbers did not grow quite as strongly as its nearby Mid-Atlantic neighbors, like New Jersey for instance.
June 2020 figures almost entirely generated online
It’s worthwhile to note that in June 2020, online sportsbooks in the Keystone State remained open for business, while physical bricks-and-mortar retail locations stayed closed partway through the month. When the brick-and-mortar casinos did reopen, they were operated at under 50 percent capacity due to operational restrictions placed on them for health and safety reasons. Mobile sports wagering comprised 99.2% of the Pennsylvania market in June 2020, according to the official figures.
2019-20 Fiscal year Sports Betting Handle up to more than $2.5 billion
June 2020 also marked the end of the 2019-20 fiscal year. Despite the global pandemic putting a big dent in the numbers for the last 3 months of the financial year, the 2019-20 fiscal year ended with Pennsylvania drawing in more than $2.5 billion in sports betting handle. Those numbers tended to temper the doom-and-gloom of some, however, at the same time, industry experts are naturally thinking how those numbers may have stacked up without a pandemic to drag it back.
Looking at the results year-on-year and a clearer picture begins to take shape. Online sports betting in the Keystone State generated that $89 million handle in June of 2020, a massive jump from the $19.3 million handle from the same month in 2019.
Sports bettors returning to the PA sportsbooks from the online casino sites
Another trend that industry experts have noticed developing is a return to online sportsbooks from the sports bettors who initially turned to online casino games when the pandemic first hit. Online casino revenue grew in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey March to May, however, that revenue declined month-on-month for both states in June as sports bettors came back into the fold.
Despite the closure of U.S. sports continuing in June, other nations sports leagues like the English Premier League, Italy’s Serie A and Germany’s Bundesliga soccer, Australia’s National Rugby League and Australian Football League all helped sports get back in the groove ready for U.S. Sports to return to action.
These betting trends could very well reflect the reopening of bricks-and-mortar casinos and simply better weather in general drawing people outside to take part in outdoor activities in later spring/early summer. However, it could be argued that part of the shift in betting activities can likely be attributed to sports bettors getting into the swing of things preparing for what lies ahead.
We’ll soon see for sure. Over the next month or two, major professional sports like the MLB, NHL and NBA swing back into action and come September, the biggest sports betting league of them all, the NFL, begins its 2020/21 season.
Happy sports betting Pennsylvania!