New Jersey Online Gambling Numbers Hit All-Time High in March

Online gambling in New Jersey continues to grow by the metaphorical leaps and bounds, as illustrated again within the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement's latest revenue summary.  In the DGE's most recent monthly update, for March of 2017, total online-gambling revenue is up 40%, year over year, when compared against March of 2016.

The huge climb in online gambling revenue drove the state's overall gambling numbers higher overall as well, leading some of the state's mainstream pundits to declare that, at last, online gambling was doing its expected part in reversing the overall fortunes of the state's long-decaying casino industry.

March of 2017 was a very good month for New Jersey's casinos, all the way across the board, but especially in the online sector.  Last month, the state's licensed online casino sites generated an Internet Gaming Win of $21.7 million, compared to $15.5 million a year early.  That's a whopping 40.3% spike.  It's likely that the month's numbers were an outlier to some extent, but no one's complaining.  That $21.7 million for the online segment in March was a full $3 million higher than the segment's previous highest monthly win, the $18.7 million figure posted in January of 2017.  The March $21.7 million online win was the first time the monthly total topped the $20 million mark, and it flew by that hurdle with ease.

Outlier or not, this is a great trend for the state.  Setting new overall monthly highs for the second time in three months indicates great things for the future, even as the naturally slower summer months approach.

The good news for New Jersey's gambling industry doesn't end there.  As yet more evidence that online gambling does not cannibalize land-based casinos, New Jersey's licensed properties also posted a great March of 2017.  The collective land-based win for the casinos was, officially, $200.1 million.  That's up from $187.5 million a year earlier, for a formal year-over-year increase of 6.7%.

 And the kicker: New Jersey currently has one less licensed casino property than it had at this point a year ago, prior to the Trump Taj Mahal ceasing operations.  The total land-based gaming win for “current” New Jersey operators thus jumped 14.9% on average, compared to March of 2016.  Add in that 40.3% online spike – noting that Trump Taj Mahal had dropped its paltry online-casino attempts much earlier, well before the property shut its doors – and the overall win for New Jersey's existing casinos actually jumped 16.9% last month in those year-to-year terms.

 The biggest star of last month's surge wasn't really PokerStars NJ (Resorts Digital) as one might assume.  Stars NJ had a great, great month, and its revenues for March of 2017 were $4,199,455.  Compared against Stars NJ's 1,878,097 win for March of 2016, it was a huge climb of 123.6%.

 That was indeed the largest percentage spike, but Golden Nugget AC did even better in total win.  A year ago, Golden Nugget's online win for March 2016 was 3,070,087.  In March of 2017, Golden Nugget AC's online win was 6,176,515.  That was only a 101.2% rise, but the amount of the raw win jumped by more than $3.1 million last month, far outstripping all other New Jersey online offerings, even that of PokerStars, 

 "Every month should be as good as March was," said Matt Levinson, chairman of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission, who issued a brief statement on the warm results to several of the state's business-news outlets. "When coupled with the very strong earnings report that came out last week,” Levinson added, “it's clear that casinos have started to grow the market and increase their profits. That is generating a lot of positive interest in Atlantic City and has already attracted significant new investment in this market." 

 As we noted earlier, March's outstanding numbers are likely to be the high-water mark for some time; the warmer spring and summer months typically slow online participation by 50% or more.  (Individual month-by-month records will still come, but they'll be at lower plateaus when compared against the cold-weather months.)  Come November and December, however, New Jersey's online gambling market is poised to produce more record-setting numbers.