Handle Down in May but Revenue a Bright Spot in N.J. Gambling

Handle Down in May but Revenue a Bright Spot in N.J. Gambling
By Lou Monaco
Fact Checked by Pat McLoone

May was an up-and-down month for New Jersey gambling, judging by official figures that were released Thursday afternoon by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE).

Total sports betting handle for the month (mobile, retail combined) posted at more than $766.41 million, a decrease of 17.3% from April ($926.95M) and down 5.9% from May 2021 ($814.27M).

Mobile sports betting handle in the state posted at more than $708.36M, down 17.9% from April’s $863.14M, and down 3.6% from last May’s more than $734.65M.

Mobile represented 92.4% share of the sports betting market in May, according to figures from the NJDGE

New Jersey Sports Betting, May vs. April 

Total handle Mobile handleRevenue
May  $766.412M $708.370M $61.594M
April  $926.947M $863.144M $50.346M
Change Down 17.3%  Down 17.9% Up 22.3%


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Positive News on Revenue

On the flip side, sports betting revenue in the state posted at more than $61.59M, up a solid 22.3% from April’s $50.35M and up 16.4% this time last year when more than $52.89M came in.

Total gaming revenue for the month, including casinos, registered at more than $430.63 million, up a mere 1.9% from April’s more than $422.52 million and a solid increase of 15.1% from last May at more than $374.21M.

Online casino gambling in the state was more than $136.02M, down 0.6% from April’s $136.88M and a 25.7% lift from May 2021 ($108.17M).

New Jersey is one of six states with legal, regulated online gaming, along with Connecticut, Delaware, Michigan, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Those states plus Nevada have legalized online poker as well.

What It All Means

“In the May 2022 gross gaming revenue numbers from the state Division of Gaming Enforcement, we see the continuation of an overall pattern of recovery for Atlantic City’s casino operators,” said Jane Bokunewicz, faculty director of the Lloyd D. Levenson Institute of Gaming, Hospitality and Tourism (LIGHT) at Stockton University School of Business, in a statement. “However, inflation may be beginning to impact in-person gaming revenues.

“In keeping with a typical seasonal increase in visitation to Atlantic City and its casinos, internet gaming revenues for the month were effectively flat at $136 million compared to last month’s $136.9 million (April 2022). We may see a flattening if not a small decline in internet gaming revenues throughout the summer as patrons shift their gaming behavior to take advantage of the city’s in-person offerings.

“Inflation, and continued increases in gas prices, may be starting to impact visitor behavior. People, still eager to get away, may consider Atlantic City with its beach, boardwalk, fine dining, entertainment and casinos an attractive choice for something closer to home. However, when they get here, they may have less money to spend.”

New Jersey Sports Betting, May 2022 vs. May 2021

Total handle Mobile handleRevenue
May 2022  $766.412M $708.370M $61.594M
May 2021 $814.271M $734.655M $52.895M
Change Down 5.9%  Down 3.6% Up 16.4%




Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media (NJ.com) in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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