For New Jersey, 2020 was a record-breaking year in the sports betting industry despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though sports were shut down for several months, the state of New Jersey accepted a record $6 billion in sports bets during the 2020 calendar year, according to figures from PlayNJ.
"A unique set of circumstances, most notably a once-a-century pandemic, sent online sports betting to these previously unfathomable highs," PlayNJ.com lead analyst Dustin Gouker said in a statement. "The pandemic has had a diametrically opposite effect on New Jersey's online and retail markets for both sports betting and casino games. But the growth of online betting was crucial in making up for at least some of the losses in revenue at Atlantic City casinos and certainly continue to steady the entire gaming industry."
In December alone, New Jersey sportsbooks accepted a record $996.3 million in wagers. The previous monthly record, from just one month prior, was $931 million. In addition, December was the fifth consecutive month that New Jersey set an all-time record for sports bets placed.
December's wagers generated a record $66.4 million in revenue for the state. For the year, New Jersey was up 78.6 percent from the $557.8 million that was bet in December 2019. That's an increase of 125.6 percent from just $29.4 million of revenue 12 months earlier.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, online betting was responsible for 93.3 percent ($929.3 million) of the state's total bets in December. Meanwhile, retail sportsbooks garnered $38.6 million in revenue in 2020, which was a drop from $54.9 million in 2019.