New Jersey Online Poker The Debbie Downer In An Otherwise Positive iGaming Month

[toc]It says quite a bit about online gambling that even in a middling month, the key takeaway is that it saved Atlantic City casinos from a down month. In June, New Jersey online casinos raked in over $20 million for the fourth consecutive month. Since its inception in 2013, legal online gambling in the state has taken in over $600 million.

There is not all good news for the developing industry, though. This was the worst month in New Jersey online poker history, with just $1.7 million in earnings. While the casino side keeps growing, online poker is not just stalled, it might be shrinking.

Golden Nugget headlines strong New Jersey online casino performances

After another huge month, Golden Nugget left little doubt it is the top NJ online casino. The site took in almost $5.6 million this month, putting it solidly in front of the competition. In December of 2016, Golden Nugget jumped up to over $4.5 million in monthly earnings, then never looked back. The previously unheard of benchmark is now par for the course for the site.

Meanwhile, the other four operators held steady in June, each generating in the vicinity of $3 million. After bringing up the rear in earnings for May, Borgata rebounded to third place behind Tropicana with a take of $3.3 million.

Here is a glimpse at what each operator took in on the casino side in June:

Golden Nugget – $5,576,526
Tropicana – $3,479,393
Borgata – $3,301,270
Caesars – $3,141,591

Year-over-year, casino revenues were up 28.16 percent.

[show-table name=cta-golden-nugget]

Overall casino revenue spared by online earnings

On the brick and mortar side, casinos in Atlantic City were steady year-over-year with $197 million in earnings. Granted, the 2016 numbers included the Trump Taj Mahal, which is currently closed. If the Taj was factored out of the equation, revenue was up $10.8 million.

Considering the year-over-year growth of online casinos, the overall results would not be possible without the boost from the growing online casino market.

New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement Director David Rebuck spoke to the AP about the numbers:

“June’s report reflects continuing overall financial stability within the industry and increasing strength for internet gaming operations. Both factors are positive indicators of the Atlantic City casino industry’s ability to successfully perform in an extremely competitive regional marketplace.”

NJ online poker numbers the lone sour point

In an otherwise positive month, there is a dark spot, and that is online poker.

The sites certainly were not going to replicate the results from May, which included PokerStars NJ’s successful NJ Spring Championship of Online Poker (NJSCOOP) tournament series.

However, this was an historically low month for online poker. The sites collectively took in $1,735,634 overall, which is the worst overall month ever for the industry. Certainly the season played a role in the decline. Additionally, a number of online poker regulars were in Nevada for the annual World Series of Poker (WSOP) live poker series.

It is still troubling that the sites took in roughly half of what they collectively did when they first rolled out in early 2014. This market appears to be on the decline. After steady earnings between $2 million and $2.5 million, it is certainly looking like more sub-$2 million months are ahead.

About the Author

Jessica Welman

Jessica Welman is a longtime member of the poker media and online gambling world. She has worked as a tournament reporter for the World Poker Tour, co-hosted a podcast for Poker Road, and served as the managing editor for Welman has been involved for livestreams for the WSOP and WPT and worked as a consultant on many other poker productions. She can be found on Twitter @jesswelman.