The brick-and-mortar facilities offering sports betting in Maryland reported that wagering fell in July, but the operators managed to win more from bettors despite the smaller handle.
Numbers released by Maryland regulators on Wednesday show the state’s six retail sportsbooks — there are no legal forms of online sports betting in the state yet — took $15.5 million in wagers during July, compared to $19.1 million the prior month. It was the fourth consecutive month the handle was lower than the previous month.
July’s haul also marked the lowest total handle for the Old Line State since December 2021’s figure of $16.5 million, which is when legal sports betting began in Maryland.
Still, while the handle was down in July compared to June, both taxes to the state and the hold were up compared to the previous month.
Maryland’s six sportsbooks reported a combined hold of $2 million for July, or a win rate of 13.1% for the month. In June, the hold had been $1.3 million and the win rate 6.9%.
The taxes the state realized from sports betting in June were $189,322, but were $298,177 for July. In the eight months sports betting has been operational, the state has collected nearly $3.2 million in taxes, which stems from the state’s 15% levy on wagering revenue.
Live! Casino leads the way
The retail facility that took the most sports wagers in Maryland last month was Live! Casino, which reported a handle of $6.2 million. MGM National Harbor was next at $4.1 million, followed by Horseshoe Casino at $3.3 million, Hollywood Casino at $1 million, and Ocean Downs Casino at $869,585.
The sixth-place finisher in terms of handle was also the newest addition to the list of sports-betting locations in the state. While the five casinos went live at the first opportunity in December 2021, Bingo World only opened its doors to sports bettors in July for two controlled demonstrations.
Bingo World and the five casinos will soon have further competition for retail sports betting.
Maryland regulators on Wednesday agreed that an entity connected to the NFL’s Washington Commanders was qualified for a retail-sportsbook license. The same went for Chesapeake Gaming, which owns an off-track betting facility in Boonsboro, Md.
Furthermore, regulators gave their approval to Betfred as a retail operator, a function the bookmaker aims to perform for Long Shot's OTB in Frederick.
“Additional facilities are expected to open in the near future,” Maryland Lottery and Gaming noted in Wednesday’s press release.