How US SOnline Sports Bettingports Betting Is Rampant and Mostly Illegal

March 31, 2018 | By kDfL4q | Filed in: Online Sports Betting.

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Betting on sports holds a peculiar place in American recreation: Only in Nevada is it broadly legal, but it happens pretty much everywhere.A case before the Supreme Court could bring the activity into the open, complete with regulation and taxation.The court will rule by the end its term in June on whether New Jersey will be allowed to legalize sports betting. If New Jersey wins, other states will likely seek follow its lead — and possibly challenge federal regulations on marijuana, guns and immigration as well.

The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992haltedthe spread of legal sports betting beyond states that already then allowed it. Nevada, where sportsbooks have been a part of casinos since 1975, was grandfathered in, as were more limited state-run sports lotteries in Oregon, Delaware, and Montana. New Jersey, home to Atlantic Citys casino industry, was given a year to adopt sports betting, but a push to amend the state constitution failed.Now New Jerseywantsto allowsports betting at its casinos and racetracks. The National Collegiate Athletic Association, along with the four major U.S. sports leagues, sued the state to stop it from going forward, citing the 1992 law. New Jersey isaskingthe Supreme Court to strike the law down as unconstitutional.

Nevadas Gaming Control boardreporteda record $4.8 billion bet at its sportsbooks in 2017, with the house keeping $248.7 million in revenue. But legal betting is just the tip of the iceberg, and nobody really knows how much money is bet illicitly. A1999 studycommissioned by Congress put the range at $80 billion to $380 billion annually. Research firm Eilers & Krejcik Gaming puts the number at $50 billion to $60 billion and estimates that bookies keep up to $3 billion of that.

If the federal law is overturned in its entirety, New Jersey would almost certainly move to license and regulate sports betting through its casinos and tracks, needing to settle questions about tax rates and rules for mobile gaming.Other statesincluding Mississippi, Connecticut and Pennsylvania have begun to make plans to introduce sports betting as well. Eilers projects that if the law is overturned, 32 states will authorize some form of sports betting by 2023, with annual revenue by then of $6 billion. Expect sports leagues, casinos, state lotteries, Native American tribes, overseas sportsbooks and daily fantasy sports operators to all compete for a share of the pie — though customers who already use illegal online services or local bookies would not necessarily move to legal providers.

League commissioners have long argued that gambling can sully sports and raise the risk of games being fixed. But the leagues have softened their positions since New Jersey began its push in 2011. A watershed moment came in 2014, when Adam Silver, commissioner of the National Basketball Association,wrote in anop-edthat sports betting should be brought out of the underground and into the sunlight where it can be appropriately monitored and regulated. He urged Congress to craft regulations and safeguards that states could adopt, if interested. In a sign of the leagues warming to the gambling industry, the National Hockey League added a team in Las Vegas last year, the citys first from one of the four major U.S. leagues, and the Oakland Raiders of the National Football League are scheduled to relocate there in 2019.

The NBAwantssports leagues to collect a 1 percent fee on all bets placed on their games, as compensation for the risk and expense created by betting and the commercial value our product creates for betting operators. Major League Baseball supports that idea. The casino lobby, not surprisingly, disagrees, saying leagues already stand to gain because legalized sports betting will drive interest in games. The American Gaming Association, which advocates for the casino industry and supports the spread of legal sports betting, argues that a 1 percent fee would amount to 20 percent of the revenue collected by sportsbooks, since they generally keep only about 5 percent of wagers after paying out to winners. The NCAA remains opposed to legal sports betting.

Thelines of questioningfrom the justices during oral arguments in December were interpreted as favoring New Jerseys challenge. Traders on the political prediction market PredictIt,foreseethe state prevailing. But even if New Jerseys arguments win out, the court could issue a narrow ruling that leaves the federal ban at least partly intact. It might, for instance, allow New Jersey to decriminalize sports betting but not to regulate or tax it. Such a ruling would, in all likelihood, keep states from rolling back prohibitions on betting. Other industries will also be watching the courts ruling closely.

A win for New Jersey could open new legal battles between states and the federal government over regulations on marijuana, guns, and immigration. Thats because the states argument revolves around whether the10th Amendmentto the U.S. Constitution — which reserves for states any powers not delegated to the United States — means the federal government was out of bounds in requiring states to maintain bans on sports betting. A win for New Jersey could embolden states in challenging a variety of federal edicts on topics such as illicit drugs and deporting undocumented immigrants.

historyof New Jerseys efforts to legalize sports betting.

tried measuringillegal betting on college basketballs March Madness in 2015.

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