Indiana’s Sports Betting Handle Topped $460m in December

A general view of Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana. Dylan Buell/Getty Images/AFP

Sports fans in the Hoosier State wagered $463 million at legal sportsbooks during December, according to a new Indiana Gaming Commission report. That fell just short of the record $463.7 million that Indiana sportsbooks handled the previous month, but it ensured the industry carried strong momentum into 2022.

It also represented a 47.9% increase on the handle in December 2020, showing that Indiana’s sports betting sector is maturing. Revenue fell 45.5% from the record of $47.7 million in November to $26 million in December.

That mirrored a broader trend seen across the country, as November was a bad month for bettors, but there were some friendlier results in December.

A Sharp Year-on-Year Increase

It means that the total Indiana sports betting handle for 2021 was $3.8 billion. That represents a 116.4% increase in 2020. Around nine-tenths of the bets were placed at online sportsbooks, but Hollywood Lawrenceburg remains one of the top retail books in the country.

It is located just over the border from Cincinnati in Ohio, and it is also close to Kentucky. Neither Kentucky nor Ohio currently has legal sports betting, so it receives lots of visitors from out of state. Indiana’s annual sports betting revenue was up 125.5%, from $136.4 million in 2020 to $307.6 million in 2021. That resulted in $19 million in taxes from the industry, up from $13.2 million the previous year.

DraftKings Retains its Crown

$148.2 million were handled by DraftKings Sportsbook in online wagers in Indiana during December. That accounted for 35% of the online handle of $422.8 million, cementing its status as the market leader in the Hoosier State.

In terms of handle, FanDuel was the second sportsbook, with $120.5 million, but it was number one by revenue. BetMGM handled $49.9 million, leaving it third, narrowly ahead of Caesars Sportsbook, which handled $48.9 million. BetRivers, PointsBet, and Unibet are among the other six operators competing for market share in Indiana.

Basketball was the most popular sport in Indiana, accounting for $148.5 million of the total handle. That left it ahead of football, which had a handle of $141.8 million, as the most popular sport among bettors in the state. Hoosiers love a parlay, as they spent $117.3 million on them in December. That could be good news for sportsbooks, as they tend to take a high margin on parlays.

Legislative Efforts Underway for Online Casinos in Michigan

Online casino gaming could soon join sports betting in becoming legalized across Indiana. Just six states currently permit online casino gaming: Connecticut, Delaware, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.

Rep. Alan Morrison, a Republican for Brazil in Clay County, hopes to make Indiana the seventh state with a legal industry. He has introduced House Bill 1337, which seeks to usher in a new era of legal online slots, table games, video poker, and live dealer games in the state.