(Gloucestercitynews.net)(January 9, 2020)--A year and a half ago, the US Senate decided to legalize online sports betting at a national level. It was a decision that shook the global betting industry - the world's largest market had just opened the floodgates... or so it seemed.
What followed has been a protracted, confusing state-by-state process that has left all of US' states at different stages of the legalization process. The federal setup in the US has led to a patchwork effect across the country with each state deciding on whether or not to allow sports betting as well as setting their unique restrictions, fees and tax rates.
At the time of writing, there are two frontrunners in this current situation; New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It was the former that set the standards early on by creating an attractive environment for sportsbooks and customers alike. Low tax rates and an easy licensing setup which involved partnering with existing casinos meant that sportsbooks flooded into the Garden state. The most crucial decision may have been to allow full and unrestricted access online. This decision stood in stark contrast to Nevada, which requires an in-person sign-up deposit and withdrawal. Many expect the Garden State to overtake Nevada in gambling revenue soon. You can now enjoy the largest selection of sportsbooks in New Jersey.
Pennsylvania took a little longer to get off the ground. The 36% tax rate, and license fee of $10 million, proved an initial stumbling block for sportsbooks. However, the lure of 13 million potential customers soon attracted the likes of Sugarhouse and eventually Fanduel, DraftKings and other followed suit. It expected that the number of PA sportsbooks in 2020 would grow to compete with NJ.
Both states boast a vast number of sports teams which will have attracted sportsbooks. PA alone is home to the Philadelphia Phillies and the Pittsburg Pirates in the MLB; the Philadelphia Eagles and Philadelphia Steelers in the NFL; the Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburg Penguins as well as the Philadelphia 76ers in the NBA. NJ is home to the New York Jets and New York Giants in the NFL and the New Jersey Devils in the NHL.
The only state that could compete with both NJ and PA online in 2020 will be Indiana. There are currently only three IN sports books; FanDuel, DraftKings and BetRivers. It is expected that 2020 will be the year that Hoosier State begins to compete with NJ and PA.
NJ is expected to retain the crown for best state for sports betting in 2020. The gaming commission is considering to legalize esports, which could lead to even more growth. Currently, 80% of sports bets in NJ are placed via mobile betting, a trend that is set to continue as sports books continue to pump investment into their apps. New Jersians also love their basketball - in the first year, there were $200,000,000 more wagers placed on basketball than the second most popular - football.
Pennsylvania is still set to reach its full potential. There have been murmurs of a reduced tax on sports books setting up shop in the Keystone state. This would increase the state's competitiveness, especially concerning newcomers like Indiana and West Virginia.
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