Arizona reports record-breaking $499.2m handle for December

Arizona sportsbooks fell just short of the $500m mark in December, though still broke the southwestern state’s betting record.

ArizonaUS

Online and retail operations in the Grand Canyon State handled $499.2m in wagers during the final month of 2021, up 7% from November’s $466.7m.

December’s action capped off a strong first few months for sports betting in Arizona, beating October’s previous all-time-high handle of $486.1m.

Arizona bettors averaged $16.1m per day over the entire month, an approximately $500,000 increase over November’s $15.6m.

This strong betting activity, remarked C. J. Pierre, Lead Analyst for PlayAZ.com, was spurred on by the NFL season, even as marketing spend from sportsbooks declined.

“The NFL season kept wagering high even as sportsbooks settled into something resembling normal after a surge of promotional spending early on,” said Pierre.

“Importantly, bettor enthusiasm remains high, and Arizonans will become more comfortable with less conventional products such as in-game betting. That should help keep activity brisk through March Madness.”

Arizonans overwhelmingly chose to place their bets online, with digital sportsbooks accounting for $494.5m, or 99.1% of all wagers. Retail sportsbooks, meanwhile, were responsible for the remaining $4.7m.

From this action, operators won nearly $40m in gross revenue, a 23% drop from the $51.4m won in November. After $23.1m in promotional credits, the state taxed $17.3m in gross event wagering receipts, yielding $1.7m for the public purse.

Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayAZ.com, added: “New York broke many of Arizona’s records after it debuted mobile sportsbooks, but that shouldn’t diminish just how well the state has performed so far.

“We expected Arizona to do well when sports betting launched in September, but the market continues to match the highest expectations with results that rival more mature markets, some with much larger populations.”

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