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DraftKings, Penn National Profit From Record-Breaking Pennsylvania December Sports Betting

By Rhian Hunt - Updated Jan 20, 2021 at 2:05PM

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Pennsylvania had nearly caught up to Nevada's sportsbook at 2020's end.

The sports-betting handle in Pennsylvania reached a record-breaking $548.6 million for the month of December 2020, the website Play Pennsylvania reports, with digital sportsbook providers such as DraftKings (DKNG -3.08%) and Penn National Gaming (PENN -8.63%) being among the beneficiaries. According to the report, Pennsylvania is now in third place for sports betting, behind New Jersey in first place and Nevada in second.

Sports betting appears to be accelerating, with the previous record-setting month in Pennsylvania being November 2020, when the handle was $525.8 million. A total of 97.5% of December's figure consisted of online sports betting, since most physical outlets remained closed for the month due to COVID-19.

Sports betting on a laptop.

Image source: Getty Images.

Penn's online sportsbook Barstool handled $71.8 million worth of wagers, racking up $13.9 million in revenue, which amounts to 42% of the total revenue taken by all gambling apps. DraftKings also made a notable profit, handling more than $100 million in sports betting in Pennsylvania for the fourth month in a row at $131.5 million, though it only made $5.4 million in revenue, less than half of Barstool's profit despite handling twice as much in wagers.

Penn's bet on acquiring Barstool appears to be a winning one so far. It appeals to young males, a demographic among the most avid sports betters. The company is already set to roll out its service in Michigan following the upcoming legalization of online sportsbooks there, and will likely do the same as the trend spreads to other states.

DraftKings is also planning its debut in Michigan, and announced a partnership with the Bleacher Report enabling it to handle proposition bets based on particular events or players during the Super Bowl.

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Penn National Gaming, Inc. Stock Quote
Penn National Gaming, Inc.
$28.49 (-8.63%) $-2.69
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DraftKings Inc.
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