Recently, on Aug. 16, the AZ Dept. of Gaming (ADG) released its report on sports betting activity during June 2023. That is the latest month on which it has statistics.
The results were mixed. On the one hand, ADG put out a press release saying that this was a 23.3% increase over June of 2022.
For example, total sports betting (i.e., known as "Gross Event Wagering Receipts (Wagers)" totaled $393.2 million in June 2023. That was 23.3% over the $318.8 million during June 2022, a gain of $74.4 million.
However, a look at the actual numbers shows mixed results on a year-over-year (YoY) basis.
Drop in June Compared to May
These June figures halted a YoY decline. For example, the prior report for May 2023 showed that there were $451.7 million in total sports bets.
Therefore, the 23% YoY gain in June 2023 halted that YoY decline in May 2023.
Seasonal Drop in Wagers Improves
This is despite the seasonal drop-off in sports betting in June over May, given the tailing off of basketball games and other major sporting events.
For example, last year sports bets fell from $461.45 million in May 2022 to $318.8 million in June 2022. That was a decline of $142.65 million, or -30.9%.
But this year in June 2023, sports bets fell just $58.5 million from $451.7 million in May 2023 to $393.2 million in June 2023. That was a lower seasonal decline of just -13.0%, compared to -30.9% last year from May 2022 to June 2023.
So, in effect, the seasonal effect of lower betting activity in June 2023 has improved. Even though people bet less in Arizona in June, it was not as bad a dropoff as a year ago.
Sports betting started in Sept. 2021, so there are no figures for May or June 2021.
Going forward, last year July 2022 sports bets were just $290.5 million. In other words in the middle of summer sports betting declines (i.e., compared to $318.8 million in June 2022, or month/month decline of 8.8%).
It will be interesting to see if the decline in July 2023 will be as much as this drop-off last year.
The bottom line is that sports betting seems to be gaining traction in Arizona.
In fact, the ADG recently opened applications for 3 new sports betting licenses. Applications were open from Aug. 1 to Aug. 15.
Arizona sports betting law created 20 operator licenses: 10 for the state’s tribes and 10 for professional sports organizations.
The ADG said it will announce any selected operators on August 29. This will bring the total of Sports betting licensees to 20.
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