How Much Are Americans Spending on Sports Betting

(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});
Anyone who is an avid bettor knows just how big betting is in the United States.

There is so much money in the American betting industry, and many are wondering why. However, no one ever gets a solid answer through a quick internet search.

For the most part, the monies that go into betting hardly ever get tabulated.

This is because a vast majority of betting is usually handled by legal offshore sportsbooks and on the black market. Neither of these entities is compelled to provide information to the general public.

Sports Betting Industry in the USA

Sports Betting Industry in the USA

Besides, there is a very limited number of sports betting options that are legal in the United States.

This means the reported number, even though it seems enormous, accounts for only a small fraction of the betting industry.

Close to 60% of Americans identify as sports fans, but this does not mean all of them are bettors. To find out how much Americans spend on betting, we first have to find out what percentage of the population identifies as bettors.

Every year, the NGCB (Nevada Gaming Control Board) rolls out a report on how much revenue in the US is attributed to sportsbooks. By dividing this amount by the number of casinos in Nevada, we should arrive at a number that represents how much each gambler spends per year.

Even though this is an inexact method; it should give a rough picture to go by.

How Much Money is Bet on Sports in Nevada?

You must be wondering why we're using Nevada to figure out the bigger picture. Well, it's because this is the gambling capital of the US.

In 1992, the state of Nevada was granted an exception to the PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act). As a result, the state has since been one of the most popular gambling tourism destinations in the world.

The state remains the nation's leader in racking impressive gambling revenue even after PASPA's repeal.

Even as new competitors enter the gambling industry, Nevada remains undefeated. Events like the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament and the super bowl break Nevada's betting financial records.

In 2019 alone, Nevada recorded over $5.30 billion in sports bets, most of which came from tourist bettors who fly in to play at prestigious casinos.

2018 recorded over 42.12 million tourist bettors in Las Vegas alone.

Adding this number to 3.03 million, which is the state's population, we arrive at a betting handle of $117.81. Focusing on the 60% of Americans who account for sports fans, the number jumps to $194.79.

How Much Money is Bet on Sports in Other States?

Sports betting in the USA

Sports betting in the USA

Even though Nevada has the largest numbers, it's not the only game in town. Several other states have started offering betting services following PASPA's repeal.

Even though it's impossible to accurately deduce how much money other states generate, legal states have started releasing numbers on a monthly basis.

Eight states, DE, NV, RI, WV, NM, NJ, PA, and MS, began offering land-based betting in 2018.

Even though yearly figures might not yet be available, monthly averages from different states can still help us arrive at a definitive figure.

That said, these figures should be taken with a grain of salt because sports betting handles usually increase month-by-month.

How is So Much Money Bet on Sports?

As more states legalize betting, it gets clearer just how much Americans enjoy to bet on sports. showcases the best sports to bet on. The sports betting industry is estimated to be worth $150 billion, and this is a conservative estimate.

After PASPA was overturned, the revenue in the black market came to light.

About 50% of Americans are projected to live in a state where betting is shall have been passed by 2024.

Currently, over a quarter of Americans have access to legal betting services.

Is Nevada or New Jersey the Sports Betting Leader?

Even though Nevada is currently king, this is set to change sooner or later.

New Jersey is a serious contender, and it's likely to take Nevada's place as America's biggest besting state. At the end of 2019, Nevada was holding the fort with a revenue of $5.32 billion. However, we can't ignore the fact that New Jersey managed to close with $4.58 billion in its first year of operation. This was over $3 billion more than Pennsylvania, the next closest state.

In 2019, New Jersey managed to handle more bets in the months of May, July, and August. With such rapid growth, it wouldn't be a surprise if New Jersey surpassed Nevada by the end of 2020.


There is clearly a lot of money spent on sports betting in America.

Sports enthusiasts get to win real cash by placing wagers on their favorite sports. Now the next time you spend money in Los Vegas, you'll know just how much of a big deal it is.

(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});