Nevada Sportsbooks Set January Record Of Nearly $450 Million Wagered

Posted on February 26, 2016

Nevada sportsbooks reportedly set a record for amount of wagers taken on sports betting in any January, although the books’ win rate was down from last year, according to figures from the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

The big month in terms of volume follows a record 2015 for sportsbooks.

The top line numbers in Nevada

The handle of more than $448 million was the most bets Nevada sportsbooks have ever taken in January:

Despite the amount coming into the books, the hold of more than $19 million was actually down 3.3% from last January.

Despite the sportsbooks’ hold decreasing year over year, the increase in amount wagered on sports betting appears to go against the grain for Las Vegas and the rest of the state, as gaming revenue was down about 3%. According to that report from the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the “January numbers reflect the importance Strip casino operators have placed on non-gaming revenue.”

You can see the NGCB report in its entirety here.

Inside the sportsbook numbers

The books did well on the NFL playoffs and basketball (NBA and NCAA) in January, winning $8.2 million on the former and $10.2 million on the latter.

More on the figures by sport:

  • The amount the books won on NFL represented a 133% increase from last year’s hold in terms of dollars; this January’s win rate was 3.5%. A total of $234.8 million was bet on football in January.
  • The hold for basketball was 5.4%; the amount won, however, was down nearly 30% from last January. $187.6 million was wagered on hoops.
  • Parlay cards and all other sports combined represented about a million dollars in the pocket of the books.

February and looking ahead

While we will have to wait for the full numbers on February, we already know the Super Bowl set a record of $132.5 million in handle in Nevada; books won $13.3 million, as well. How well the books do overall will obviously depend on the basketball handle and hold for the month.

March, of course, is an important month for sportsbooks, with the NCAA tournament — aka March Madness — starting in the middle of the month.

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Dustin Gouker

Dustin Gouker has been a sports journalist for more than 15 years, working as a reporter, editor and designer -- including stops at The Washington Post and the D.C. Examiner.

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