The streak of $1 billion handle months is now at three in Illinois sports betting after figures for the final month of 2022 were reported.
The December handle, or amount wagered, at Illinois sportsbooks was $1,028,471,257. That was down just 0.1%, or about $1 million, from November ($1.0295 billion). The December handle was a 30.3% jump from December 2021, when it was $789.6 million.
Illinois in Rare Company With $1B Handle
New York, New Jersey and Nevada are the only other states to ever exceed $1 billion in sports betting for one month, and now Illinois has done it three months in a row. Nevada did it four months in a row from October 2021 to January 2022 but has not done so since; can Illinois match the Silver State’s feat? We’ll know in about a month when Illinois releases January sports betting figures.
The longest such streak belongs to New York, which reported 10 figures in handle in each of its first six months after launching mobile sports betting, from January to June 2022.
Illinois took $9.75 billion in bets on sports for all of 2022, a 38.9% increase from 2021, when that total was just over $7 billion.
Illinois Sports Betting Handle, December vs. November
Mobile Illinois Sportsbooks Set Record
For the third consecutive month, mobile Illinois sportsbook apps set a state record for handle in December.
Online sports betting handle was $990,965,303 to end the calendar year, beating the mark set in November by about $1.4 million, or 0.1%.
Illinois had remarkably consistent overall and mobile handle for the final three months of 2022. The state went from $989.28 million at online operators in October, to $989.6 million in the November Illinois sports betting revenue report, to nearly $991 million in December.
The overall handle record was set in October at $1,029,560,184. The state missed resetting that mark by only about $40,000 in November and fell short by just over $1 million in December.
The December mobile handle was a 31.6% increase from the $752.86 million recorded 12 months earlier, according to online reports from the Illinois Gaming Board.
Since the requirement to register in person for mobile sports betting ended in Illinois in 2022, the online portion of the market has been more dominant than ever. Mobile wagers accounted for 96.4% of the total handle in December. For 2022 overall, about 96%, or $9.362 billion worth, of bets were placed by customers using mobile, laptop or desktop devices rather than at brick-and-mortar casinos.
Betting Revenue Declines in December
The sports betting revenue in the Land of Lincoln for December was $82,403,727, a decline of 15.0% from about $97 million from November in a month-over-month comparison.
Much like handle, the revenue in Illinois has hit new highs the past few months.
The October Illinois betting revenue set a record at $102.1 million, the first time the total hit nine figures. So though December’s $82.4 million in revenue trailed the previous two months, it is still the third-highest total in state history and was more than double the December 2021 revenue of $33,685,291.
The 2022 total sports betting revenue was $794,991,687, up 51.4% from $525.1 million in a year-over-year comparison to 2021.
Football Tops, But Barely
Like most states, football is the top betting pastime in the latter months of the year, and that continued in December in Illinois with almost $300 million in football handle. However, the margin is smaller than a lot of other states because basketball betting is still huge in the Land of Lincoln, with $285.77 million in wagers for December.
Thanks to the unusual December World Cup conclusion, soccer betting was third in the state at $63.1 million, followed by tennis ($35.9 million) and hockey ($34.3 million). The parlay handle was $245,711,646.
The sports betting tax dropped 15.3%, from $15.7 million in November to $13,301,017 in December.
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