Illinois Sportsbooks Post Record Month, Fourth Straight Billion-Dollar Handle

Written By Dave Briggs on March 14, 2023 - Last Updated on March 15, 2023
Record Illinois sports betting handle

Illinois sportsbooks set a record for handle in January and topped $1 billion for the fourth straight month. The numbers were released today by the Illinois Gaming Board.

More than $1.07 billion was bet through IL sports betting apps in January.

That’s up 4% from the previous monthly record of $1.03 billion  that was bet on sports in Illinois in November. More than $1.029 billion was bet through Illinois sportsbooks in December. In October, Illinois sports betting handle topped $1 billion for the first time.

Illinois is just the fourth state to post four consecutive months of billion-dollar handle. The others are New York, New Jersey and Nevada.

In January, Illinois jumped over Pennsylvania into third place in lifetime sports betting handle with over $19.7 billion bet on sports. Illinois will surpass the $20 billion mark when February numbers are released.

Illinois’ January numbers also pushed the total, lifetime sports betting handle in the United States over $200 billion.

For all of 2022, Illinois sports betting handle was exactly $9,751,301,251. Illinois ranked third in sports betting handle in 2022 behind New York (over $16.2 billion) and New Jersey (just shy of $11 billion).

Ohio posts impressive inaugural month

However, in January, Illinois slipped slightly to fourth place in the national handle race thanks to a new state entering the fray. Ohio launched sports betting on Jan. 1. The Buckeye state handled $1.1 billion in its inaugural month to land second behind New York and ahead of both New Jersey and Illinois.

Top January 2023 handle by state:

  1. New York ($1.8 billion)
  2. Ohio ($1.1 billion)
  3. New Jersey ($1.08 billion)
  4. Illinois ($1.07 billion)
  5. Nevada ($936 million)
  6. Pennsylvania ($772.3 million)

Illinois sports betting handle up 23% year-over-year

Though January IL sportsbook handle was about the same as December, November and October, it was up 29% from the September total bet of more than $831.8 million and 89% from the August figure of $565 million.

The growth is mostly attributable to a change in legislation.

In March of 2022, legislation came into effect allowing Illinois residents to sign-up online for sportsbooks, rather than doing so at one of the state’s land-based casinos. The decision to allow residents to register online with one of the state’s seven legal sportsbooks has been a boon to the industry.

That explains why Illinois sports betting handle in January 2023 was up 23% over the same month in January 2022, when over $867 million was bet on sports.

IL sportsbook revenue ranked third in US in January

In terms of gross gaming revenue, Illinois ranked third in the US in January at just over $88.5 million.

Ohio led the nation in revenue with over $209 million, followed by New York with almost $150 million. Illinois was ahead of New Jersey, which had revenue of over $72 million.

Prior to the arrival of Ohio on the scene, Illinois was second in the US in sports betting revenue in all of 2022 with more than $806 million.

New York was tops in the US in sports betting revenue with nearly $1.4 billion. New Jersey was just behind Illinois in third with almost $763 million.

In December alone, the Prairie State was third in the United States with nearly $81.4 million in sports betting revenue. That amount is behind New Jersey’s revenue of $87.7 million. New York led the nation in revenue in December with nearly $143 million.

Illinois sports betting revenue – January 2023

LicenseeOnline BrandHandleRevenueHoldTaxes
Fairmount ParkFanDuel$373,531,524$43,749,20411.7%$7,513,796
Casino Queen East St. LouisDraftKings$336,933,843$23,860,2607.1%$4,048,928
Rivers Des PlainesBetRivers$110,376,255$7,905,3997.2%$1,400,642
Grand VictoriaCaesars$59,037,622$1,205,6862.0%$392,758
Hollywood AuroraBarstool$48,888,863$2,993,5576.1%$591,499
Hollywood Joliet$1,491,770$102,3626.9%$7,708

Illinois over $15 million in tax revenue in January from sports betting

In January, Illinois sportsbooks produced total tax revenue of $15.4 million.

In 2022, sports betting in Illinois has produced total tax revenue of nearly $128 million. Lifetime, Illinois sports betting has generated almost $248 million in tax revenue since sports betting launched in the state in June 2019.

In December, IL sportsbooks generated over $13 million for state and local coffers. In November, sportsbooks in Illinois generated over $15.5 million in taxes.

Illinois had an effective sportsbook tax rate of 17.4% in January.

Meanwhile, the hold in Illinois was 8.3% in January. It was 8.3% in all of 2022, 7.9% in December and has been 7.9% lifetime.

Illinois sports betting surpasses Pennsylvania’s lifetime

With more sportsbooks coming soon to Illinois, the future is bright for the industry.

In January, the Prairie State surpassed Pennsylvania in sports betting handle. In terms of revenue, Illinois jumped over Pennsylvania in November 2022.

Lifetime sports betting handle:

  1. New Jersey — almost $35 billion
  2. Nevada — almost $30.5 billion
  3. Illinois — over $19.7 billion
  4. Pennsylvania — over $19.6 billion
  5. New York — almost $18.5 billion

Lifetime sports betting revenue ranking (through January 2023):

  1. New Jersey — nearly $2.5 billion
  2. Nevada — over $1.7 billion
  3. Illinois — over $1.568 billion
  4. New York — over $1.55 billion
  5. Pennsylvania — over $1.54 billion

Sportsbooks exceeded $200 billion in lifetime handle nationwide

Lifetime, the 27 states that have legal sports betting have produced combined handle of over $200 billion through January. Revenue is almost $15.7 billion and total tax revenue is nearly $2.69 billion.

In 2022 alone, total handle was more than $93 billion. Total revenue in 2022 was close to $8 billion. Combined tax revenue was more than $1.5 billion for the year.

illinois sports betting lifetime handle january 2023 bar chart

Photo by PlayIllinois
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Dave Briggs

Dave Briggs is a managing editor and writer for Catena Media. His expertise is covering the gambling industry in North America with an emphasis on the casino, sports betting, horse racing and poker sectors. He is currently reporting on the gaming industries in Illinois and Canada.

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