Five years after the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act was struck down, the American Gaming Association has found a significant increase in public support for legal sports betting.
According to AGA research, 85% of American adults now agree with the Supreme Court’s decision to repeal PASPA, up from 63% in 2019. Furthermore, 77% of American adults support the legalisation of sports betting in their state of residence.
Legal Market Growth and Impact after PASPA repeal
Since the repeal of PASPA in 2018, Americans have legally wagered $220 billion nationwide. This has generated $3 billion in state and local taxes, which have been used to fund education, healthcare, infrastructure, responsible gaming initiatives, and problem gambling resources.
The legal market’s growth has led to a 60% reduction in illegal gambling, with 78% of bettors now placing all or most bets through regulated operators. AGA President and CEO Bill Miller said, “The rapid spread of legal sports betting—fueled by regulated, responsible entities—has contributed to communities and established consumer protections by migrating betting away from the illegal market monopoly that PASPA perpetuated.“
Consumer Awareness and Preference for Legal Operators
With the legal market’s expansion, bettors are increasingly choosing regulated operators over illegal bookies and offshore entities. Reasons for this preference include confidence in payouts (71%), trust in account security and easier payment options (68%), and availability of responsible gaming resources (58%).
However, there is still work to be done in educating consumers, as 70% of sports bettors who primarily placed bets with illegal operators believed they were betting with legal sportsbooks or an equal mix of legal and illegal operators.
Implications for the iGaming Industry
The growth of the legal sports betting market in the US has three major implications for the iGaming industry:
- Increased demand for regulated, responsible operators: As consumer preference shifts towards legal sportsbooks, the iGaming industry will need to focus on providing a secure, transparent, and responsible gaming environment to attract and retain customers.
- Collaboration for consumer education and protection: The iGaming industry, along with policymakers, law enforcement, regulators, leagues, media, and technology providers, must continue to work together to educate consumers on the legal status of operators and enhance consumer protections.
- Expansion of the iGaming market: With more than half of American adults (57%) now living in a legal sports betting market, the iGaming industry is expected to grow further, providing increased revenue opportunities for operators, suppliers, and other stakeholders.
Overall, the legal sports betting market in the US is experiencing significant growth, with increased public support, tax revenue generation, and consumer awareness. The iGaming industry must adapt to these changes to capitalise on the emerging opportunities and challenges.