As people stay at home to avoid getting the coronavirus, it looks like the cards are stacked against casinos and the gambling industry. Although US gambling is down, industry observers are optimistic the industry will have a strong comeback after the pandemic.
2020 was supposed to be the banner year for sports wagering in the US. It is almost two years after the Supreme Court allowed states to legalize sports betting. At present, the activity is legal in 21 states and Washington, DC.
Pro leagues embraced sports betting. Even the NCAA welcomed it and changed its rules to allow single-game wagers. Many sportsbook pay per head providers predicted the March Madness would bring in millions in tax revenue for states with legal sportsbooks.
US Gambling is Out during Coronavirus Outbreak
Almost all casinos in the United States temporarily closed in April. In Las Vegas alone, around 206,000 workers lost their jobs. According to pay per head reports, 92,000 Nevadans filed for unemployment in the week after the closing of the casinos. That was the highest number of unemployment filing in the history of the state.
As people stay at home, lottery sales took a hit as well. However, the gambling industry is still optimistic. Many states are now looking into the legalization of online gambling due to the pandemic. More people turn to the internet to gamble during their free time.
Based on gambling software reports, Atlantic City casinos earned $483 million from online gambling in 2019. New Jersey is one of six states with legal online casino and sports betting. During the pandemic, online casinos continue to earn while land-based casinos are closed.
Also, online sports betting is still alive despite the lack of live sports events. Bookies find exciting things to bet on, such as table tennis matches or the Top Chef.