The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission reported nearly $6.6 million in sports wagering revenue for June, a monthly low for 2022 as operators could not sustain their momentum from May while dealing with the seasonal summer downturn in handle.
The $122.4 million wagered, however, was enough to make Iowa the 12th state to clear $4 billion in all-time handle since launch in 2019. The Hawkeye State reached the milestone in 35 months. Slightly more than $1.2 billion worth of bets were placed in the first six months of the year.
Handle dipped 17.2% from May, but the 5.4% win rate was more than three full percentage points lower compared to the previous month. That sent revenue tumbling 48% lower compared to May, marking its lowest monthly total since operators claimed slightly less than $6.6 million last October.
Despite the month-over-month declines, the year-over-year dollar figures continue to track positive. Handle was up 10.1% compared to June 2021 and revenue was 22% higher, despite the hold being 7.6% during the same time last year.
The state received almost $450,000 in tax receipts, which raised the total for the year to nearly $4.7 million. That is nearly $1 million more compared to the same time period in 2021. Handle for the first six months of 2022 is 50.3% higher than the same span in 2021, while revenue is 25.7% higher despite a 5.7% win rate that is more than one full percentage point lower versus last year.
Big drop in Q2 handle, revenue from Q1
Compared to the first quarter of 2022, the $447.7 million wagered in April through June was 40.5% lower, with the $31.6 million in operator revenue representing a 15.2% decline. Operators barely eclipsed the industry standard win rate for the quarter at 7.1%, but that was a huge improvement versus the sub-5% spanning the first three months of the year. The $2.1 million in state taxes over the last three months was nearly $400,000 less compared to the first quarter.
Posting a healthy hold, though, has been a challenge for the house in Iowa. The 8.5% hold reported in May is the only one above 7% in the last 11 months, though it did fall just short of that mark in April. The 5.7% hold for the first six months of 2022 is nearly one-third of a percentage point lower than the 6.1% mark since launch.
May was a historically rough month for retail sportsbooks in the Hawkeye State, as the $340,551 in revenue and 3.2% win rate represented all-time lows for months not impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. It was just the sixth time brick-and-mortar sportsbooks failed to generate at least $1 million in revenue, but the third time it happened this year.
Six of the state’s 19 retail books finished in the red for June, with Q Casino suffering its worst loss in paying out $41,901 more than the $193,557 it accepted in wagers. Grand Falls also took its largest monthly hit, finishing $32,870 under on $532,593 handle. Isle Casino in Waterloo also absorbed a five-figure loss as bettors came out $12,801 ahead on $85,521 in bets.
Caesars’ market share continues to dwindle
For the second straight month, Caesars finished third in mobile handle behind DraftKings and FanDuel, but the gap from first to third widened. In May, the $38.5 million in wagers accepted by DraftKings was $8.4 million more than Caesars; in June the gap was nearly $9.6 million as Caesars posted $22.7 million handle –its lowest since $20.4 million in August 2020.
While some of Caesars’ decline can be attributed to the slower summer months, June’s handle still represents a sharp 79.9% drop from its record handle of $112.7 million in January, which remains the high-water mark for any mobile operator in Iowa.
DraftKings ($32.3 million) and FanDuel ($30.7 million) were the only operators to surpass $30 million in handle for June, and Caesars along with BetMGM ($12.7 million) completed the foursome of mobile books to post eight-figure handle totals. FanDuel took top honors for revenue with more than $1.9 million, with DraftKings a relatively close second, approximately $180,000 behind.
BetMGM edged Caesars for third as both cleared $900,000, but BetMGM was less than $25,000 shy of $1 million. Circa became the first mobile sportsbook in state history to have three consecutive losing months, as bettors came out $27,577 ahead on $723,915 wagered. Circa has a -4.5% win rate in that span, paying out $113,811 above the $2.5 million in bets placed.