Summer Sports Betting Slump Hits Virginia July Handle

Summer Sports Betting Slump Hits Virginia July Handle
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Virginia sports betting saw a seasonal dip as bettors wagered just under $162 million, a decrease of slightly more than 31% from June’s nearly $235 million.

Sports wagering typically slumps in the summer with mainly baseball to attract bettors’ money. Many sports gambling jurisdictions are likely to see summer declines with expectations of sharp wagering increases once college football and the NFL begins.

This was the sixth full month of sports wagering financial reporting in Virginia since the commonwealth launched online sports betting on Jan. 21.

The July sports betting adjusted gross revenue (AGR) was almost $12.7 million, which was down 14.8% from June (almost $14.9 million). Correspondingly, July sports betting taxes were $1.86 million, down 18% from June ($2.27 million). The hold for operators was a combined 12.33%.

There are seven licensed operators included in July’s reporting, including FanDuel Sportbook, DraftKings Sportsbook, BetMGM, BetRivers, William Hill/Caesars, WynnBET and Unibet.

Virginia Sports Betting Handle & Revenue, July vs. June

Total HandleRevenue Taxes
July$161.902M$12.691M$1.864M
June$234.943M$14.897M$2.274M
Change Down 31.1% Down 14.8% Down 18.0%

Barstool Now Live in VA

Barstool Sportsbook has joined the market, launching in August. Golden Nugget Online Gaming could be next. Since the start of sports wagering in Virginia through the end of July, bettors have wagered $1.48 billion on everything from baseball betting and tennis betting to basketball betting and the Olympics.

So far, online sports betting is the only option in the market. But gamblers could see several casinos in the commonwealth in various cities, perhaps as soon as next year.

VA Betting Tax is 15%

For Virginia gambling, the tax on betting activity is 15%, based on each permit holder’s AGR — total wagers minus customer winnings and other authorized deductions. Those deductions can include certain customer acquisition costs, such as player bonuses, and in July, operators reported about $4.38 million in bonuses and free-play incentives. In July, four operators reported a net positive AGR.

Since sports wagering started in the commonwealth, Virginia’s operators have showered players with nearly $50 million in promotions and bonuses. It will bear watching to see how operators approach customer acquisition with the start of football season.

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