Expanding regulated sports betting into states where gambling is already legal could pump an additional $12 billion into the US economy. That’s the estimate given in a recent report from a group called GamblingCompliance Research Services.

That $12 billion figure is roughly four times the entire UK sports betting market, which is currently sitting at somewhere near 2.8 billion annually. At $12 billion a year, the US market would be the largest sports betting market on the planet.

So what states would see the biggest benefits from regulated sports betting? According to the report, California (poplulation 38 million) would see just over a billion dollars worth of gross gaming revenue on sports betting each year, if wagering was offered at existing tribal casinos and retail and online spaces.

Though given California’s difficulties passing an online poker bill, regulating sports betting could prove challenging.

New York state, which is home to almost 20 million people, would likely see sports betting revenue in the neighborhood of $900 million in gross gaming revenue.

GamblingCompliance’s managing director, James Kilsby said the US is inching ever close to a regulated sports betting reality saying:

U.S. policymakers, casino groups and sports leagues have all begun to consider what a regulated sports-betting market would look like without the PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act) prohibition. States are already moving rapidly to regulate daily fantasy sports, but sports betting represents a far larger and more lucrative opportunity.

Currently, sports betting is only allowed – in any form – in four US State, Nevada, Delaware, Montana and Oregon. The combined gross gaming revenue of those four states, of which Nevada is the only one to offer what the rest of the world would recognize as sports betting, is only around $300 million.

It’s believed that only about one percent of all US sports bets pass through regulated markets.

(Photo by Mark Fischer)

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