PlayUSA Rewind: Sports Betting Stocks Up With Election Buzz

Written By Nicholaus Garcia on November 11, 2020Last Updated on December 30, 2020

Wow, what a week. Things went from Election Day to Election Week, culminating with Democrat Joe Biden becoming the 46th president of the United States of America.

But Americans didn’t just vote for a new president — a few states also voted to legalize sports betting, which created some buzz on Wall Street. However, Election Day wasn’t kind to everyone — looking at you, Ohio.

But don’t worry, Playin USA has you covered. So strap in; we have some important issues to cover.

On the rewind:

Election Day big for online gambling stocks

The big winners on Election Day, in terms of sports betting, were Louisiana, Maryland, South Dakota — and online gaming stocks. Following the Nov. 3 frenzy, a handful of gaming stocks, including DraftKings and Penn National Gaming, saw an uptick on Wall Street.

According to Bloomberg, the morning after Election Day,
online sports betting stocks rallied

  • DraftKings — 6.2%
  • Penn National Gaming — 6.1%
  • *Flutter Entertainment (owner of FanDuel) — 2.5%
  • Roundhill Sports Betting & iGaming ETE (BETZ) — 1.8%

*Flutter appears on the London Stock Exchange

A trio of states legalizing sports betting is great news for companies looking to expand their digital footprint. DraftKings’ stock has been generous to early investors, while the emergence of the Barstool Sportsbook has, so far, been an asset for Penn National.

Louisiana will be a tremendous asset to operators who can find footing in the South, especially for NCAA betting.

Maryland is yet another East Coast state surrounded by sports betting markets, like Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Properties like MGM National Harbor, which sits right across the Potomac River from Washington, DC, should benefit tremendously.

South Dakota, on the other hand, only legalized sports betting within the city limits of Deadwood near the Wyoming border. It may not be the most attractive of the three, but there are already discussions brewing about online gaming.

The takeaway: The US is steadily embracing sports betting. This means online gaming stocks should continue to see steady gains on Wall Street. But financial analysts are still hesitant to jump completely on board. Some say as many as 20 states need sports betting with 3-4 years of operating data before any concrete value can be placed.

Ohio sports betting just got trickier

Election Day creates two things, winners and losers. This time around, three key supporters of Ohio sports betting were on the losing side.

In Ohio’s 16th District, Rep. Dave Greenspan lost re-election to Democrat Monique Smith. Over in the 32nd District, Republican Sandra O’Brien ousted incumbent Sen. Sean O’Brien, a Democrat. And lastly, Sen. John Eklund was unfortunately termed out.

The loss of Greenspan, O’Brien and Eklund means, for now, three fewer votes in support of a sports betting bill.

“The governor has said repeatedly that sports betting in Ohio is inevitable,” Dan Dodd, former state representative and VP of government relations at ZHF Consulting, told Legal Sports Report.

“People will pick up the flag and move forward next session. I just don’t know who they will be yet,” he said.

The takeaway: Losing three supporters isn’t a good start. But perhaps Dodd is right. Maybe others will pick up the sports betting banner and charge into Columbus during the lame-duck session and pass a bill. But maybe not. But what’s for certain are the governor’s remarks that sports betting is inevitable. All the state has to do is figure out which government entity will run sports betting when it finally does arrive.

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Betting apps we expect to see in Michigan

Our last topic provides a bit of optimism for Michigan sports betting. But the big question in the Wolverine State is, when will online sports betting launch?

While there is no exact launch date just yet, we can provide an educated guess as to which operators you can expect.

Michigan has 15 casino operators, each capable of partnering with one sports betting platform, and most already have deals in place.

Some of the sportsbooks you can expect to see include:

  • FanDuel Sportsbook
  • DraftKings Sportsbook
  • Barstool Sportsbook
  • BetMGM Sportsbook

Some of these operators already have retail sportsbooks, like FanDuel at MotorCity Casino in Detroit. So it’s safe to assume a mobile app will follow. While there are only three commercial casinos, there are a number of tribal properties spread across Michigan. With that in mind, don’t rule out other operators like William Hill, Fox Bet, PointsBet and BetRivers.

The takeaway: Michigan residents just need to be patient. Soon, the state will be a hotbed for sports betting and online casino gaming, which experts anticipate will bring in hefty amounts of tax revenue for the state. It’s also safe to assume residents will have upward of 15 different options for mobile sports betting, so start doing your homework.

Photo by Craig Ruttle / Associated Press
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Nicholaus Garcia

Nick Garcia is a senior reporter for Playin USA. Garcia provides analysis and in-depth coverage of the gambling industry with a key focus on online casinos, sports betting and financial markets. Garcia has been covering the US gambling market since 2017. He attended Texas Tech University as an undergrad and received a Master of Arts in Journalism from Columbia College Chicago.

View all posts by Nicholaus Garcia