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First Year Success for Iowa

After being announced in 2019 and put into action in January 1st 2021, the legalisation of sports betting in Iowa has managed to get off to a flying start as Iowa gambling laws look to continue expanding outwards to include more services – as the first year is coming to a close with the holiday season fast approaching, how are the figures looking at how do these numbers look compare to other states who had initiated change during a similar period of time? 

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Both retail and online sports betting in Iowa have been subject to a 6.75% tax rate for all sports bets, which is comparable to other states and has been something that many experts have been suggesting is a great way for states to recover some of the economic losses, some other states do have much higher rates at 36% for Pennsylvania and 14% for New Jersey for example, so it is a nice middle ground. So far nearly $10 million in just tax revenue from these services has been earned and the number continues to increase showing just how successful the approach has been. 

For dollars spent on sports wagers, numbers are rivalling other states as over $2 billion has been wagered since options were first introduced at the start of the year, with a quick roll-out towards the start of the year with operators having already been prepared for the launch things were able to take off extremely quickly – similar figures had been shown in other states such as Colorado which went through the same somewhat explosive growth in 2020 after legislation enabled online sports betting much in the same way, and has been considered something of a blueprint for the way forward for other states, something that Iowa was seemingly able to follow very well.

In comparison to those that haven’t managed to implement the change as quickly such as Maryland, the difference is night and day – not only had a priority been placed on ensuring things were set-up ahead of time but operators were also kept in the loop of what to expect, for Maryland it had been the opposite where continued delays have meant online sports betting particularly for mobile may not be around until 2022 at the earliest. 

Many eyes will be on watching Iowa closely as with the other states too, as the legislation around sports betting is changing extremely quickly, the promising first year figures are hopefully a sign of things to come, particularly as international interest grows with operators looking for every opportunity to expand out into the US and the big states that have options in place.

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