Retail sports betting in West Virginia lost ground in February, according to the latest report from the West Virginia Lottery.
Nearly $40 million was bet on sports in West Virginia through retail and online outlets during the second month of 2023. The state collected close to $2.8 million in tax dollars.
However, betting was down from the previous month and nearly $10 million less than in February 2022.
West Virginia retail sports bettors fared better than operators
West Virginia sports betting numbers include both retail and online data. Players can place online bets at seven sportsbooks and at each of the state’s five casinos and racetracks.
February was a tough month for retail sports betting operators but a good one for the bettors. Operators of brick-and-mortar facilities actually lost money in February, around $566,705.
Retail sports bettors gambled roughly $4.3 million last month and collected about $4.9 million. Sportsbooks lost about $9,765 on retail voids.
Online sports betting continues to be a West Virginia favorite
Unlike its retail counterpart, online sports betting resulted in about $3.4 million in taxable receipts during the month of February. Bettors gambled close to $35.4 million using online sportsbooks, cashing in on about $32 million.
The first West Virginia sports betting report of the new year (Jan. 1 through Feb. 4) showed $55 million in bets.
- Online sports betting accounted for $48 million.
- Retail claimed about $7.5 million in handle.
All in all, total taxable revenue from January sports betting came out to $4.5 million.
Month-to-month, West Virginia’s bets and revenue are down. It’s worth noting, however, that the latest figures from the Lottery are for just four weeks, not five like January’s.
February 2022’s sports betting handle totaled close to $48.5 million, nearly $9 million more than last month’s $39.8 million.
However, total taxable receipts were up. This past month’s revenue (roughly $2.8 million) was almost $1 million higher than in February 2022. That month, sports betting resulted in about $1.9 million in tax revenue to the state.
2023 Super Bowl set a betting record in the US
There’s typically a slight lull in the sports betting world from December until March. December boasts a full NFL schedule and college football bowl season, in addition to the other main drivers.
February does have the Super Bowl. The 2023 Super Bowl set a gambling record in the US. According to GeoComply, a company that verifies bettors’ locations when using a sportsbook app, around $100 million was gambled during the big weekend. That’s a nearly 25% increase from last year’s figures.
According to a CNBC report, FanDuel grabbed roughly $17 million in Super Bowl bets. The sportsbook averaged two million active users during the game.
Sports betting numbers often rise with March Madness
When all said and done for March, keep an eye out for the West Virginia Lottery’s report. Last year, about $55.7 million was wagered in the Mountain State during March. That was roughly a $7 million month-to-month leap from February 2022’s figures.
According to the American Gaming Association, more than 17% of adults in America planned to wager on March Madness. The AGA’s 2022 predictions were for $3.1 billion in wagers.
As we get closer to the tournament, be on the lookout for 2023’s projections. It’s safe to assume we’ll see record highs, much like with the Super Bowl, since sports betting is now legal in more states.