It was certainly a week for records in the sports betting industry! On the third anniversary of legal sports betting in the state, Pennsylvania broke the record for the highest sports betting handle, as both their online and retail sportsbooks brought in a total of $776 million for the month of October, which is up 48% from October 2020 and 34% from September.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced this big news on Wednesday

Along with this highed betting handle record, Pennsylvania also broke another impressive record. In October, the state’s lifetime sports betting handle officially surpassed $10 billion. Pennsylvania is now also only one of two states (the other is New Jersey) to produce $1billion in gross revenue from online casino and poker over a single calendar year.

Dustin Gouker, an analyst for PlayUSA, was certainly impressed by these numbers from Pennsylvania. “Three years in and the state’s sportsbooks continue to expand,” he said, “Remarkably, about half of all wagers and revenue have come through sportsbooks in the last 10 months. Pennsylvania clearly has room to grow before it reaches its ceiling.”

Gouker then talked a little bit more specifically about mobile sports betting. “Online gambling continues to thrive, while the state has a consistent and significant revenue generator,” he said, “Pennsylvania taxes its online gambling industry at a higher rate than any other open market in the US, and that decision made years ago by regulators has proven to be a valuable one for the state.”

Amazing Numbers

Since the legalization and subsequent launch of the sports betting industry in Pennsylvania in November 2018, the state has generated $10.1billion in wagers, about half of which was generated in 2021, $776.8m in gross revenue, $232.9m in free bets, and $192.2m in state taxes. These numbers are astronomical.

According to the Legal Sports Report, online sportsbooks generated 92% ($714.1m) of Pennsylvania’s total handle. The top sportsbook for the month was FanDuel Sportsbook, which generated $270.8 million in mobile sports betting. DraftKings Sportsbook came in second, generating $201.7m, and Penn National and Barstool’s sports betting app came in third, generating $71.5 million.

These numbers were achieved with a little bit of help from a couple of sports. The start of the NBA, college basketball, and NHL regular seasons certainly played a role in Pennsylvania’s steller sports betting financial performance in October.

In addition to that, there were a full five weeks of both NFL and college football action. Perhaps the month of November will see numbers fall, but right now, Pennsylvania and a lot of other states are just riding that high. Eight other states recorded monthly records for the month of October.

Though Pennsylvania is not the only state racking up massive numbers right now, it is certainly still impressive. Will they be able to maintain or even exceed these numbers in the coming months? Chances are, they will not, but considering the beginning of a lot of sports in October, the numbers still make sense.

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Allyson Park is a sports writer and media content creator at Knup Solutions. She covers a variety of sports, including football, soccer, basketball, and baseball. She is currently a student at Virginia Tech majoring in multimedia journalism and minoring in creative writing. Her favorite sports to watch are NFL football and women's soccer. After graduating, she hopes to enter the sports journalism industry and provide a unique angle and perspective on sports as a woman of color.

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