PA Hits Jackpot with Gambling Expansion

It has been barely a year since Pennsylvania passed laws that expanded the state’s gambling industry significantly, but one thing is clear: The Keystone State seems to have hit the jackpot when it comes to revenue for its coffers. A US gambling news portal analyzed the state of Pennsylvania’s gambling market over the past year and found that almost $400 million was generated ever since Governor Tom Wolf signed on the changes in October last year.

The report calculated the funds brought in for license application fees to operate online gambling platforms in Pennsylvania, as well as online keno, lottery and sports betting sales.

Online lottery went live in the state earlier this year, and it is estimated that some $23 million was raised from this sector ($19.6 million from draw based games, $3.6 million from keno and almost $90K from virtual sports).

The rest of the sum was made up of:

  • $128 million for online gambling licenses
  • $94 million for interactive gaming fees
  • $78 million for casino license fees
  • $60 million for sports betting license applications
  • $1.4 million from licenses paid by operators of Daily Fantasy Sports in Pennsylvania.

Just short of $800 million was generated from slot machines operations in the 2017-2018 financial year, an amount that is in addition to the $400,000 generated from gambling expansion.

It is difficult to predict the big picture over a long term because the high tax rates and steep license fees could hamper the gambling market’s growth, however, according to industry analyst, Jessica Welman: “If the point of the expansion was to fill short-term gaps in the state’s budget, then the expansion would have to be considered a success so far.”

It is only after the online gambling industry goes live in Pennsylvania will analysts be able to give a better analysis of long term growth.



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