New Jersey Sports Betting Revenue Way Down in April, But Major Gains Made in Online Gaming and Poker

This afternoon, New Jersey released its gaming revenue results for April, which showed another sharp year-over-year dip amidst the coronavirus pandemic. It brought in $82.6 million in revenue compared to $265.4 in April of 2019 — a 68.9% decrease.

The biggest drops, to no one's surprise, came with in-person games like slots and table games, along with sports betting. New Jersey reported a betting revenue of just $2.6 million compared to $21.2 million a year ago. Interestingly, the state is still up on the year for sports betting ($86.4 million) compared to 2019 ($84.4 million), which highlights the steep growth curve it was on prior to the pandemic.

But the most interesting thing about the numbers is the huge increase in revenue among online games, including online casino games and poker. The former brought in a whopping $74.8 million in April, which was a 114.3% increase over April 2019, when it brought in $34.9 million. Notably, New Jersey is one of only three states in the U.S. to offer legal online casino games. Pennsylvania and Delaware are the other two.

Poker saw even bigger gains, jumping in revenue by 208.7% from $1.7 million in 2019 to $5.1 million last month. New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Nevada are the only states to currently offer legal online poker.

New Jersey April 2020 Gaming Revenue

CategoryNJ April 2020 RevenueYoY Growth/Decline
In-Person Games$0N/A
Online Poker$5.1 million+208.7%
Online Casino Games$74.8 million+114.3%
Sports Betting$2.6 million-87.6%

Some states are pushing to legalize online gaming, including poker, especially as COVID-19 and social distancing has shut down state economies. West Virginia and Michigan, among others, are discussing it among legislators.

Sports betting could have hit its low point: The UFC returned last weekend, making it the first major live sporting event to come back since mid-March, and it brought a huge handle to online books. There are two live golf events this month, including this weekend, and NASCAR will return in May as well.

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