The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement reported total gaming revenue of nearly $412.2 million for the month of February on Thursday as declines in revenue from both internet casino gaming and sports wagering more than canceled out the month-over-month gains posted by Atlantic City casinos.
After setting an all-time record of $152.9 million in iGaming to kick off 2023, website-generated revenue cooled off to just shy of $142.6 million, slipping 6.7%. It was still an increase of 9.7% compared to February 2022, when the total landed at close to $130 million. Poker revenue slipped 15.7% to nearly $2.3 million, while iCasino operator winnings were down 6.6% to $140.3 million.
Casino revenue was up 1.6% from January to just shy of $215 million, which was also an increase of 1.2% from the February 2022 total of $212.4 million. There was a 4.9% month-over-month bump in slot revenue to $159.3 million, with the additional $7.5 million absorbing a $4.2 million decline in table games to $55.6 million. The table games revenue was also a 4.9% decline for year-over-year numbers, while slots improved by 1.2% versus the comparable 2022 period.
Sports wagering revenue backslid 24.5% from January to $54.6 million, as the house had a modest hold under 6.5% on $847.4 million handle. The total revenue amount from all gaming was down 5.7% from January but up 10.4% from last February. The month also saw the end of a four-month run of $1 billion sports betting handles for the Garden State, which has seen handle drop 17.3% compared to the first two months of 2022, when mobile betting became available across the Hudson River in New York.
Tax receipts from all gaming disciplines amounted to nearly $42.9 million, with close to half of that coming from internet casino gaming at $21.4 million. Retail casino tax revenue came to over $14.3 million, while sports wagering provided the remaining $7.1 million. Despite the soft handle at sportsbooks, operator revenue is up 39.4% compared to 2022, as the house’s 6.6% win rate is nearly 2.7 percentage points higher.
Resorts, Golden Nugget, Borgata stumble
Six of the eight internet casino platforms had month-over-month declines in February, with Resorts and Golden Nugget taking the biggest hits in terms of dollars. Resorts, which had crossed $40 million in total revenue in December and January for the first two times in history, had a 10.6% decline to land at close to $36 million.
Golden Nugget, which set an all-time record in January when it crossed the $40 million threshold for the first time, saw revenue dip almost 10% to $36.5 million. The Borgata had its eight-month streak with at least $40 million in total revenue come to an end, finishing less than $270,000 shy of that benchmark after a 2.6% decline.
Tropicana had the sharpest month-over-month decline, as its $6.7 million reported for February was 14.8% off the previous month’s $7.8 million. Hard Rock‘s revenue dropped 7.1% to $5.6 million, while Ocean Casino posted a decline of 3.6% to just under $3.8 million.
Bally’s and Caesars were the lone platforms to make gains from January, with Bally’s up 15.5% to land at more than $5.9 million. Caesars ticked 0.4% higher to slightly above $8.3 million.
Caesars paces pack for casino gaming revenue gains
Caesars led all Atlantic City brick-and-mortar venues in terms of monthly dollar gains at $2.2 million, with its $19 million in total revenue up 13.1% versus January. A solid uptick in table games hold to 23% led to a gain of more than $960,000 on the felt, while slot revenue climbed nearly $1.24 million, aided by 19 additional gaming positions.
Resorts had the highest percentage gain at 13.8%, tacking on more than $1.5 million from January to more than $12.6 million, with the increase coming via slots. Hard Rock and Harrah’s also posted seven-figure gains of $1.6 million and $1.2 million, respectively, with Hard Rock picking up $1 million of that via table games to reach $37.5 million in total revenue. Harrah’s was able to offset a drop of more than $550,000 in table games due to slot revenue that surged by more than $1.8 million to nearly $17 million.
The Boardwalk’s bellcow, Borgata, had a 1.5% decline to nearly $57.5 million, though the biggest area of decline came from poker revenue. That drop was more than $925,000 to $1.1 million, while the advances and declines from table games and slots nearly canceled each other out.
Overall, seven of the nine casinos posted month-over-month gains. Ocean Casino reported a decline of 13.9% to $26.3 million for February, its lowest total since claiming $25.4 million last May.
Operators had solid Super Bowl winnings
New Jersey sportsbooks claimed $12.8 million in revenue from Super Bowl LVII, likely helped along by Philadelphia Eagles fans in the southern part of the state picking their team to beat the Kansas City Chiefs. The books’ win rate from Super Bowl wagering in the Garden State was 11.7%, more than six percentage points higher than 2022 when operator revenue from the game totaled only $7.8 million.
Year-over-year revenue was up 76.9%, as the overall hold was more than 3.3 percentage points higher versus February 2022. The Meadowlands, which is the tether for FanDuel, PointsBet, and SuperBook, accounted for more than half the overall revenue this year with more than $31.1 million. Resorts Digital, which includes DraftKings among its internet operators, finished a distant second for revenue at just shy of $12.3 million.
Boardwalk Regency, which hosts 888.com and WynnBET as its internet platforms, posted its second straight six-figure loss, with the $208,347 in payouts above handle dropping it to nearly $610,000 in the red to start the year. Harrah’s, home to Prophet Betting Exchange, reported a loss of more than $85,000.
On the retail side, Borgata’s brick-and-mortar sportsbook is off to another slow start, though still noticeably better than 2022. It has paid out more than $700,000 above its handle thus far, but it was also down close to $4.3 million after the first two months of last year.
Five retail books posted February losses, with four of them — Borgata, Bally’s, Harrah’s, and Resorts — having also started 2023 with a monthly loss. Harrah’s had the second-biggest retail loss at nearly $303,000, while Ocean Casino had its January winnings wiped out by paying out $138,200 on top of its handle. Overall retail revenue was just under $895,000, the first time it failed to reach $1 million since a $1.4 million loss last February.
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