According to a recent report, it appears that sports trading and sports spread betting could be legal across 32 US states within the next five years, if the US Supreme Court rules in favour of the state of New Jersey’s request.
Eilers & Krejcik Gaming, LLC report
Eilers & Krejcik Gaming, which keeps tabs on gambling legislation across the US, states that this potential new market could be worth over $6 billion. If all the US states were to eventually get on board, sports betting could be worth an estimated $15.8 billion. Good news for betting exchanges that focus on the US markets like Matchbook.
Stateside bettors currently wager around $6 billion each year through offshore bookmakers and websites. Fully legalised sports trading and betting across the US could open the door for betting exchanges like Smarkets and Matchbook to expand their operations across the pond, and could also see matched betting taking off in the US.
Opposition from some states
Despite the potential financial income to be gained from legalised betting, the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas opined that it was unlikely all 50 states would offer sports betting in the foreseeable future due to longstanding opposition to such gambling in a few states.
If the High Court rules in favour of New Jersey’s request, it is predicted that 14 states would offer sports betting within two years, followed by a further 18 within five years. A further dozen could join the bandwagon within a further seven years. Many already established casinos could also be set to welcome sports trading into their portfolio, hoping that habitual gamblers will diversify their interests and try something new.
However, outside of the general gambling community there is opposition to New Jersey’s efforts to legalise sports betting from many major collegiate and professional sports leagues. The fear is that allowing betting to take place on sporting events might threaten the perceived integrity of the games. Given the regular accusations of ‘cheating’ levelled at individuals in horse racing, cricket, and football over recent years, it seems likely that opposition to betting exchanges will be strong.