Maryland Ends 2023 With Record-Breaking $559.9 Million Sports Betting Handle

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On Jan. 10, 2024, the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency published its financial report for Dec. 2023. According to the agency, Dec. 2023 was Maryland’s single-best month to date for the state’s sports wagering market. The state recorded $6,482,403 in the form of taxes collected on a record handle of $559,865,463.

As per state laws, each licensed sportsbook in Maryland contributes 15% of its taxable win to the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Fund, which has been set up to support public education programs.

December was the second straight month Maryland betting operators posted a new handle record, with the total amounting to a 1.7% increase over the $550.7 million handle from Nov. 2023. When calculated on a YoY basis, the handle for Dec. 2023 is 12.6% higher than Dec. 2022, which was the first full month for legal sports betting in the state. The state’s 12 sports betting apps contributed $542.7 million out of the $559.9 million in recorded wagers.

Between the state’s operators, the combined hold stands at 11.1% for the month, a significant increase over the 7.6% recorded in the previous month. Nov. 2023 recorded the lowest hold in the 14 months during which sports betting has been legal in the state.

Here is more on Maryland sports betting| Maryland Sportsbook Promos

Maryland Sports Wagering in December 2023

According to a report from MDM Gaming, the sports wagering numbers for Dec. 2023 in Maryland are as follows:

Handle (Amount Players Wagered, Including Free Promotional Wagers)

  • Retail: $18,214,529 (includes $32,146 in free promotional wagers)
  • Mobile: $541,650,934 (includes $19,731,089 in free promotional wagers)
  • Combined: $559,865,463

Prizes (Winnings Paid to Players)

  • Retail: $15,951,461
  • Mobile: $481,583,070
  • Combined: $497,534,530

Hold (Handle Less Prizes Paid)

  • Retail: $2,263,068 (12.4%)
  • Mobile: $60,067,864 (11.1%)
  • Combined: $62,330,932 (11.1%)

Taxable Win (Amount Remaining After Deducting Prizes, Promotional Wagers, and Other Amounts)

  • Retail: $2,109,127
  • Mobile: $41,106,891
  • Combined: $43,216,018

Sports Wagering Tax (15% of the Taxable Win)

  • Retail: $316,369
  • Mobile: $6,166,034
  • Combined: $6,482,403

Of the adjusted gambling revenue of $62.3 million, Maryland levied tax at a rate of 15%, resulting in a contribution of $6.5 million. Over the 2023 calendar year, the state received $46.2 million in sports wagering taxes, an increase of a staggering $40 million compared to the $6.1 million collected in 2022. It’s important to note that online wagering only began on Nov. 23, 2022.

In a statement accompanying the report, Maryland Lottery and Gaming Director John Martin said:

“The numbers we’re seeing over the last six to 12 months reflect the maturation of the market. Initial projections were that sports wagering would generate $25 million to $30 million annually for the state as the market was ramping up. We’ve now had more than a year of mobile wagering, and we expect the annual contribution to settle in at more than $40 million.”

FanDuel Continues Dominance in Maryland

Despite committing to a lighter spend in 2023, ESPN BET has made notable inroads in Maryland, heightening the competition between the likes of DraftKings, FanDuel, and other established giants of the sports betting industry.

In Dec. 2023, its promotional credits totaled $5.8 million against $42.4 million in recorded wagers, allowing it to get ahead of BetMGM and claim the third spot among the state’s dozen sportsbooks for 2023.

Regardless of the turbulence, FanDuel got ahead of its competitors with $33.6 million in gross gambling revenue, which was contributed by a 13.7% hold. This hold figure is almost six percent higher than the all-time low recorded in the state (7.7% in Nov. 2023). December was also DraftKings’ best month of the year, with the sportsbook clocking a revenue of $16.1 million with a 9.6% hold.

Some of the growth recorded by the dominant platforms came at the expense of Fanatics Sportsbook. The platform saw its handle drop by 26.6% to $14 million. December was the first month that Fanatics Sportsbook ended with positive adjusted gross revenue since its launch in May. With the AGR coming in at $131,000, it has had little to no effect on the minus $-3.2 million that it recorded over the entirety of the year.

Parlays Popular With Maryland Bettors

Like the rest of the country, Maryland bettors strongly favor parlay wagers, including same-game parlays. During the last five months of 2023, the parlay handle in Maryland has grown from $74.7 million in August to $254.8 million in December.

The parlay handle spiked by 26.8% from November and a 19.1% hold in December, resulting in an $86.5% increase in parlay revenue to $48.5 million. This figure amounts to 78% of December’s total gross gambling revenue.

About the Author
Nikhil Kalro

Nikhil Kalro

Nikhil Kalro is a sports betting writer at Gaming Today. With an interest in strategy and mathematics, applying that to sports writing was the natural progression. Nikhil’s previous experience includes working with ESPN for five years. His specializations include soccer, football, basketball, tennis, and esports betting.

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