Many states are seeing a summer slump in sports betting. Numbers are at all time lows, sports fans aren’t showing up to the casinos, and many are forced to put their spending money towards the surging gas prices. It’s looking better for those involved in Illinois sports betting, though. May was a great month for the state, and it looks like the handles are only getting higher from here.
The Illinois sports betting handle for the month of May came to an astounding $764.6 million, which is far higher than many midwest states. Right now, with few sports in their regular seasons, most states are seeing numbers between $200 million-$500 million, so Illinois’ handle is truly impressive.
In fact, Illinois sports betting was the third highest in the entire country for May. The state sat right behind New Jersey, only $2 million lower than Jersey’s handle. When comparing the May numbers to the April numbers, the Illinois sports betting handle dropped only 9%, which isn’t much when factoring in the fewer events for bettors to put their money on.
We can most likely thank mobile wagering for the rise in Illinois sports betting. The registration for mobile betting expired in March, and numbers have only gone up since, as many people probably rushed to join. Since May of 2021, the handle for Illinois has risen by over 50%.
A Closer Look at Illinois Sports Betting Numbers
The sportsbooks in Illinois took home quite a sum, with a total revenue of $67.5 million. Compared to last May, when the gross revenue for sportsbooks was $36.2 million, it has risen by $36.2 million. The hold rate for May came to 8.8%, which isn’t too bad.
Chris Altruda, a reporter with SportsHandle, stated:
“Illinois’ handle was essentially higher in March and April, but it did not decline as precipitously as other states have in those months so the decline was actually less than 10%, which to me was a little surprising…”
Looking at taxes, it seems that the state of Illinois made a good amount of money as well. Illinois took home $10.9 million in taxes. This money will mainly go to the state’s Common School Fund.
Leading Sportsbooks in Illinois
With online sports betting comes more sportsbooks, and more money gambled. FanDuel had the highest online handle for the month of May, which came to $253.7 million. This brought the operator $30.4 million in revenue. The numbers come out to a 12% hold for FanDuel.
DraftKings was next in line for the leading sportsbook in Illinois. The operator had a handle of $204.1 million, which made them $13 million in revenue. The third leading sportsbook in the state, BetRivers, came nowhere near these two. The sportsbook had a handle of $82.7 million, which made them $7 million in revenue.
Basketball bets made the state the most money, as the sport took up 25% of the total bets placed ($192.9 million). Next was baseball, which brought the state another $183.5 million. Another $155 million was put down on parlay bets.