What’s behind the Spike in New Jersey’s Gambling Revenue Records?

by Staff

New Jersey is one of the best states in the USA for those who are interested in gambling, thanks to their permissive laws surrounding sports betting, casinos, iGaming, horse racing, and more. It’s no surprise, therefore, that revenue from gambling would be on a steady increase year-on-year. Recent statistics from January this year show that total revenue reached an incredible US$559.1 million, which is a 28% increase from January 2023, and 7.1% more than December 2023. These numbers are significant and show that the appetite for all different kinds of gambling is here to stay. 

Gambling Growth in NJ: Online Casinos

It’s clear that the growth of gambling in New Jersey is not going to slow down anytime soon, but what’s behind this staggering spike in revenue? One explanation offered by many gambling experts such as Vlad Grindu is that the legalization of online gambling has a big role to play. iGaming was made legal by the state of NJ in 2013, and the industry has expanded since this time to accommodate over 20 different game operators. There are sites dedicated to sharing the best online gambling providers that the state has to offer, such as on Techopedia, where New Jersey residents can choose from online casinos, slot machines, and many more games. As of January, the most popular iGaming provider in NJ is Golden Nugget, with Resorts Digital and Borgata coming in just behind.


Although brick-and-mortar casinos are still a popular option in the state, more and more people are choosing to play online casinos games instead. To put it simply, they are much more convenient and accessible, as anybody can play them at any time of day, from anywhere in NJ. Not all states in the US have legalized online gambling, which means New Jersey has become something of a gambling destination, attracting both domestic and international tourists. Studies have shown that profit from iGaming alone has reached a record-breaking $183.3 million, which is a 19.9% increase year-on-year.

The New Jersey Sports Betting Market

It is not only online casinos that are driving the revenue records in New Jersey – sports betting is also one of the fastest-growing and highest-earning types of gambling in the state. Once again, more records were broken this past January, as revenue reached $170.8 million, which is an unbelievable growth rate of 136.1%. The key reason behind this spike is that those partaking in sports betting are happy to spend more. So much so that total spend for January 2024 alone was $1.72 billion. Another explanation is that New Jersey residents are able to choose from a plethora of different sportsbooks, including DraftKings, Meadowlands, and FanDuel, all of which offer their own unique bonuses, odds, and rewards schemes.


Interestingly, January managed to be a record-breaking month for New Jersey’s gambling markets despite the fact that in-person casino winnings fell. Experts have analyzed the data and deduced that these huge numbers are largely due to the popularity of sports betting and online casinos. Residents are able to bet on their favorite teams, such as the New Jersey Devils and the New York Giants, who compete in the NHL and the NFL respectively. Instead of traveling to a retail sportsbook, gamblers can get the best odds and place bets on their teams and leagues from the comfort of their own homes.  

Will This Upward Trend Continue?

Although at the moment the sports betting market is thriving, the future is a little more uncertain. Senators have put forward a bill that would increase the tax rate from 13% to 30%, which would put significant strain on mobile betting operators. However, the bill has not been enacted, so there is a good chance the taxation will remain as it currently is. And even if the bill is passed, there are a range of benefits that will be seen from it, not least of which being the additional money provided to the state’s ledger.


There are controversies surrounding in-person gambling, which may lead to an even larger increase in the number of people choosing to gamble online, and a bigger revenue spike. The issue in question is that of smoking within casinos. For a long time, many casino employees and players have expressed to lawmakers their dissatisfaction with the fact that smoking is still permitted within the premises. In recent weeks, these people filed a lawsuit, which, if successful, will make it illegal to smoke in casinos. 

Despite the clear lean towards online gambling, the record-breaking revenue spike is not solely a win for gaming providers. Because of third parties, such as sportsbooks, any money earned by an online casino must also be shared with these groups. This does not mean that casino operators are any less enthusiastic about sharing their services with the people of New Jersey, though. Regardless of any minor setbacks, there is no doubt that iGaming is here to stay, and will continue to be just as much of a major player as retail casinos, if not more.

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The New Jersey Digest is a new jersey magazine that has chronicled daily life in the Garden State for over 10 years.

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