Since the United States Supreme Court lifted the federal ban on sports betting in May last year, a total of eight states have operational sports betting industries. All of these states had very high hopes for sports betting, but things are not looking so good for some of the state’s – officials in four of the states where legal and regulate sports betting are ongoing have reported that the revenues from their respective industries have fallen short of most premarket forecasts.
According to recent Associated Press reports, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Mississippi, and West Virginia, the four states, have found that the sports betting revenues have failed to meet projections by some rather significant margins. West Virginia, for instance, is roughly 75 percent short of its premarket forecasts – with four months left in its fiscal year, the state’s sports betting market has managed to rake in just $862,000 in sports betting taxes compared to the $5.5 million that was projected in the inaugural campaign.
Mississippi and Pennsylvania, on the other hand, have realized just a little over half of the forecasted sportsbook wins while Rhode Island seems to have taken the hardest hit, bringing in just about $50,000 which is just about 2 percent of the projected $1 million.
What Does This Mean??
A number of explanations have been forwarded to explain why sports betting has not been a cash cow in the states where it has been legalized and is regulated. However, some of the speculated reasons for the performance seem to make sense – they include slow rollouts, poor hold on handles as well as the exclusion of mobile betting.
As it turns it out, the exclusion of mobile betting in the states whose sports betting industries have been hit the hardest seems to be the root cause of the problem. Needless to say, sports bettor these days prefer online and mobile sports betting as opposed to having to queue at land-based sportsbooks and bookmakers. Fortunately, the Keystone State is preparing to launch online and mobile betting in the course of the year which implies that there might be hope for the industry. Unfortunately, sports bettors in the other three states do not have the same amount of optimism.
Still, it might also be important to take all of the revenue projections with a grain of salt. While they are certainly very useful and necessary, some of their historical inaccuracies cannot be dismissed. Across the whole of the United States, overall revenue for the new casinos almost always fall below projections. As such, there might not need to be any cause for alarm, at least not yet.