Home » New Jersey gambling revenue, helped by sports betting, rose 10.4% in April

New Jersey gambling revenue, helped by sports betting, rose 10.4% in April

ATLANTIC CITY — New Jersey’s casinos, horse tracks that accept sports bets and their online partners won more than half a billion dollars from gamblers in April, an increase of 10.4% from a year earlier, state gambling regulators said Thursday.

But that was due in large part to the state’s second-best month ever for internet gambling. The industry’s key business — money won from in-person gamblers — continued to sag, down 6.3% from a year ago.

Figures released by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement show the casinos, tracks and their partners won nearly $511 million in April from in-person gambling, internet betting and sports bets.

But money from internet and sports bets must be shared with casino partners such as sports books and tech platforms and is not solely for the casinos to keep. For that reason, casinos consider in-person winnings to be their core business.

And it’s one that continues to struggle.

Six of the nine casinos won less from in-person gamblers in April than they did a year earlier. And six of nine casinos also won less in-person money this April than they did in April 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Jane Bokunewicz, director of the Lloyd Levenson Institute at Stockton University, which studies the Atlantic City gambling market, said that while in-person casino winnings are likely to improve in the coming summer months as visitation spikes, Atlantic City may see more of its revenue growth come from non-gambling areas such as food and beverage sales.

“It will be many months before a clear picture of this trend is available, but operators’ recent investments in improving resort offerings suggest that a significant shift in the market’s overall revenue mix could be coming,” she said. “A focus beyond gaming, to the elements that make Atlantic City unique and a stronger competitor against the threat of New York City casinos, is simply good business.”

In terms of in-person revenue, the Borgata won $58.3 million, up half a percent from a year earlier; Hard Rock won $41.1 million, up 6%; Ocean won $28.8 million, down 15.6% in a month during which part or all of its casino floor was shut down for four days while switching from one computer system to another; Tropicana won $17.7 million, down 9.2%; Harrah’s won $16.4 million, down nearly 25%; Caesars won $16 million, down 18.4%; Bally’s won $13.1 million, down 4.9%; Golden Nugget won $12.7 million, down 3.1% and Resorts won $12.4 million, virtually flat from a year ago.

Including internet and sports betting revenue, Borgata won $107.7 million, down 0.2%; Golden Nugget won nearly $66 million, up 20.4%; Hard Rock won $55.2 million, up 18.6%; Ocean won $35.7 million, down 8.6%; Tropicana won $34.8 million, up nearly 28%; Bally’s won $21.5 million, up 5%; Harrah’s won $18.3 million, down 16%; Caesars won $16.1 million, down 19.3%; and Resorts won $12.1 million, down nearly 2%.

Among internet-only entities, Resorts Digital won $66.4 million, up 7.2%, and Caesars Interactive NJ won $612,910 in a month in which three internet gambling sites switched from the interactive company to Tropicana.

Internet gambling had its second-best month in April with nearly $188 million won online, an increase of 18.2% from a year ago.

Sports betting brought in over $1 billion in April, with $106 million of that total kept as revenue after paying off winning bets and other expenses.

The Meadowlands Racetrack in East Rutherford, near New York City, won the lion’s share of that at $73.1 million. Resorts Digital won nearly $19 million; Freehold Raceway won $2.2 million, and Monmouth Park Racetrack in Oceanport won $953,798.

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By Wayne Parry. Follow him on X at www.twitter.com/WayneParryAC