The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has released July’s sports betting numbers, and it appears that the Hawkeye State experienced nearly an 80% increase in handle from the previous month. July’s sports betting handle tallied up to $22.9 million, whereas in June, it reached a seemingly paltry $12.7 million.
While an 80% increase is certainly a reason to celebrate, no one is breaking out the champagne just yet. In February 2020, prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Iowa sportsbooks saw a $57 million handle. This means there is still a long way to go before getting back to the previous “normal.”
From the newly-inflated handle, the revenue earned was $2.2 million, a staggering 261.5% increase from the $620,000 earned in June. From the revenue generated by sports betting operators, the state earned $150,000 in taxes.
The Power of Mobile Betting
One area that is proving its worth is mobile sports betting, which reached $17.8 million in July, a 53.4% increase from June’s $11.6 million. In July, mobile wagers accounted for 78% of the total handle. While mobile betting has always been popular in New Jersey, the new reality of COVID-19 means that it will become the new normal in many states. Mobile betting might prove even more popular if the Commission decides not to require in-person registration at casinos, which as of now, is required until the first of January, 2021.
Projections for the Future
July marks the third month in a row in which Iowa sports betting has been on the rise, which means that August is expected to see a further increase. Not only are more land-based sportsbooks open, but the main driving force is the return of several pro sports. As long as these sports are not shut down again due to COVID-19, Iowa, and indeed, all states that offer legalized sports betting, should see a great increase in August numbers. If all goes according to plan and pro football kicks off in September, there should be a further rise in revenue.