The experts at BetMaryland.com have assembled this guide to explain what we mean when we talk about Maryland sports betting revenue, also known as hold, compared to the sports wagering handle that the state reports each month.
There is an evolving sports betting market in Maryland with many online/mobile operators as well as a number of retail sports wagering options at brick-and-mortar casinos. There is also in-person betting at smaller physical facilities around the state. The number of online sportsbook operators and retail sports wagering facilities is expected to increase in the near future.
The handle is simply the total dollars wagered on sports in the state each month. In Maryland, bettors wager hundreds of millions of dollars each month. After a sports betting law was passed by the state’s General Assembly in 2021, legal, regulated sports betting began initially at retail sportsbooks in five casinos in December 2021. Online sports betting launched with seven operators in November 2022.
The revenue derived from online Maryland sportsbook apps is called hold – that refers to the amount that operators have left after they pay out winning bets. Taxable win is the hold minus promotional wagers and other specified deductions. Each sportsbook contributes 15% of its taxable win to the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Fund, which supports public education programs.
Maryland’s total sports betting handle in August, mobile and retail combined, was almost $263.73 million, an increase of 6.6% over July ($247.41 million).
The vast majority of the handle came from mobile sports wagering options, as has been the case since they launched in late 2022. Handle, or amount wagered, on mobile, laptop and desktop devices accounted for $250.36 million of the bets. That included about $8.15 million in free promotional wagers and represented an increase of 5.4% from July (about $237.53 million).
August retail sports betting handle was nearly $13.37 million, up 35.2% from July ($9.89 million).
While handle was up, August sports betting revenue (taxable win) was down. Total sports betting revenue last month was about $17 million, a drop of 22.9% from July (almost $22.1 million). Correspondingly, the state tax from sports betting fell from $3.31 million in July to $2.56 million last month.
Maryland now has 12 mobile/online sportsbooks and 12 retail sportsbooks. Some of the retail sportsbooks are in casinos and some in a variety of other businesses. Additional mobile and retail sportsbooks are expected to enter the Maryland market in the future.
The August Maryland mobile sports betting handle by operator: Live! Casino Mobile, about $104.2 million; DraftKings/Crown MD, about $91.97 million; BetMGM, almost $20.24 million; Caesars, almost $14.11 million; Hollywood Casino Mobile, about 5.51 million; Maryland Stadium Sub, $6.68 million; BingoWorld/Arundel Amusements $3.46 million; Riverboat on the Potomac Mobile, $2.21 million; Long Shot’s $1.16 million; SuperBook, $441,367; Crab Sports, $214,487 and Greenmount $180,496.
August’s Maryland retail sports betting handle by casino: MGM National Harbor $5,880,893, Live! Casino (Hanover) $2,831,935; Horseshoe Casino Baltimore $1,290,844; Hollywood Casino Perryville $937,732; Ocean Downs Casino (Berlin) $924,814.
Retail handle at other facilities last month: BingoWorld $814,462; Riverboat on the Potomac $333,386; Maryland Stadium Sub $148,901; Long Shot’s $142,449; Greenmount OTB $60,164; Whitman Gaming $2,105; Canton Gaming $1,630.
Retail sports wagering began in Maryland in December 2021. Mobile operators began offering online sportsbooks on Nov. 23, 2022.
The tax rate for Maryland sports betting is 15%. That’s what operators pay to the state out of the taxable win, which is hold minus promotional play and other deductions.
The Maryland Lottery & Gaming Control Commission reports its figures for sports betting once a month, usually on the 10th of the following month (or, if the 10th falls on a weekend, on the first day of the month after that).
Sports gambling tax proceeds go to Maryland’s Future Fund, which supports public education programs.
The Maryland Lottery & Gaming Control Commission.
Mobile sports betting handle refers to the amount of money wagered on mobile or online apps, using phones, laptops or other online devices. In Maryland, total handle refers to the combined handle of both online wagering and sports betting done at licensed retail establishments. Many online operators in the state offer Maryland sportsbook promo codes to customers.
Handle is the term used to refer to the amount of money wagered. Hold in Maryland refers to what’s left after winning bets are paid out. Taxable Win, which also includes deductions for promotional play, is the amount on which the operators are taxed.
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