Sports betting helps propel casinos to fourth straight year of revenue gains

The legalization of sport betting helped propel U.S. casinos to a record year, with gaming revenue rising 3.5% from 2017 to $41.68 billion, according to the American Gaming Association.

It was the fourth consecutive annual increase, the trade group said in its State of the States report.

In May 2018, the Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, clearing the way for sports betting outside Nevada. Seven states adopted sports wagering legislation by year’s end: New Jersey, Delaware, Mississippi, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and West Virginia.

The expansion helped the sports gaming market grow revenue nearly 65% year over year to $430.2 million. And in 2019, the AGA said data through April showed a 175% increase in revenue from sports betting over 2018, in the months before it was legalized.

But the legal industry still has a mighty challenge in the form of illegal sports wagering.

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