Colorado betting handle hit $360 million in May

SportsHandle and friends deliver another round-up of the week’s big developments in US sports betting
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Colorado sports betting revenue in May echoed the national trend of a month-over-month dip but major year-over-year growth. The state’s many sportsbooks accepted just over $360.3 million in wagers, generating $16.7 million in taxable revenue.

The Colorado Division of Gaming does not report revenue by operator but does break down betting action by sport. The NBA postseason was the most popular sport with over $100 million in handle. Baseball followed suit with $90 million in bets. Despite what was the beginning of a winning postseason run for the Colorado Avalanche, hockey only posted $35.7 million in wagers. Parlays, as always, were a good source of action with $62 million in handle.

And for those keeping track of table tennis, yes, it is still one of the most popular sports to bet on in Colorado. Bettors posted nearly $3 million in action and the activity was more popular than MMA in May.

Handle fell off from April’s $392 million, but this 8.4% drop is consistent and expected given we are entering the summer doldrums of the sports calendar. Compared to April 2022, which had $249 million in bets, yearly growth is up 32.6%. Sports betting in Colorado recently turned two years old.

May’s revenue report is a good illustration of why state auditors are worried about Colorado sports betting revenue’s tax implications. Gross gaming revenue for the month was $27.1 million, but taxable revenue was only $16.7 million. With $11 million in tax write-offs for promotions and free bets, the state only collected $1.67 million in taxes. With the 10% tax rate, that is more than a million dollars lost because of these deductions.

Hold for the month was a healthy 7.6% for the month. It will be interesting to see how much that number dips for June once all the Avalanche futures pay out.