New Jersey sees online revenue jump to $85.9m

Sports Betting

May was almost as bad a month for Atlantic City’s casinos as April was.

With Atlantic City’s casinos shuttered and silent due to the coronavirus, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement said Friday that the casinos and two racetracks elsewhere in the state took in $91.1 million in May, a decrease of over 65% from May 2019.

That put it just below April in terms of the all-time biggest year-over-year declines for gambling revenue in the state. April’s decline was nearly 69% compared to a year before.

As was the case in April, nearly all that money came from internet gambling operations, nearly $86 million. That total was up over 124% from a year earlier when all nine casinos were open.

With most major sports shut down due to the pandemic, sports betting generated a minuscule $9.9 million for the casinos and two horse tracks: the Meadowlands and Monmouth Park.

Though casinos in numerous other states have reopened, Atlantic City’s remain closed, with no reopening date set. Many hope to be open by July 4, but acknowledge they have no idea when Gov. Phil Murphy will give the go-ahead to resume operations.

The Golden Nugget, which leads New Jersey’s online gambling industry, took in the most money in May at over $29 million, virtually all of it from internet operations. (It won an additional $54,000 from sports betting.) Its performance represented a decline of 6.8% from a year earlier, the best in Atlantic City in May.

The Borgata was next at $17.3 million, down nearly 72% from a year ago. Tropicana won $6.7 million, down 77%; Hard Rock won $5.6 million, down over 81%; the Ocean Casino Resort won nearly $1.5 million, down 91.5%; and Bally’s won less than $33,000, all of it from sports betting, down 99.8% from a year earlier.

Harrah’s reported negative revenue of over $16,000 for the month, compared with revenue of $25.6 million a year earlier. The casino said the loss represented sports bets made before the shutdown that were paid out in May.

Two casinos, Caesars and Resorts, reported no casino revenue, but conduct internet gambling operations through online affiliates. Resorts Digital won $21.4 million online, up 77% from a year earlier, and Caesars Interactive-NJ won $9.4 million, up nearly 110%