Casino Gaming and Gambling
American gambling is a complicated industry, as the country has both state and federal laws which regulate how people can make real money bets. Federal laws are passed by the government, affecting the entirety of the USA, but states can pass individual laws. This is why there’s such disparity in what’s available. In Tennessee, for example, casino gaming is illegal both online and in land-based venues, but online sports betting is permitted. An example of a far more legislatively liberal state for American gambling sites is Pennsylvania, where players have their pick of brick-and-mortar and online casinos and sportsbooks.
New Jersey became the first state to legalize internet-based US casino sites in 2013, and a select handful of other states have since followed suit. Sports betting, whether online or in person, had a milestone moment in 2018, when the Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). This was a long-standing federal ban on sports betting across much of the US, and the Supreme Court’s decision freed up states to decide for themselves whether to legalize the activity or not. It fundamentally altered the landscape of legal gambling in America.
USA Casino Industry
There’s a wide range of players in the American gaming industry. Looking at the land-based casino industry specifically, major operators include:
- MGM Resorts International
- Las Vegas Sands
- Caesars Entertainment
- Wynn Resorts
When it comes to American gambling sites online, some of the biggest sportsbook and casino brands include:
- FOX Bet
State-specific regulators such as the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement and the Michigan Gaming Control Board are part of the apparatus that keeps the gaming industry in check. There’s also the American Gaming Association (AGA), a national trade group. While not a regulatory organization as such, the Association advocates for responsible gambling and favorable policy decisions that benefit both the industry and the players.
Popular Types of Gambling Sites in the USA
USA gambling sites online cover all the bases. There are two main options available.
Casino sites encompass a huge variety of real money games. You’ll usually often find many hundreds of video slots, including progressive jackpot slots. There will also be a range of classic table games, such as blackjack, roulette and baccarat, and possibly live dealer games where the action is streamed live from custom-designed studios.
Since PASPA was thrown out by the Supreme Court, online sportsbooks have become a major component of American gambling. These US gambling sites let members place both pre-game and live, in-play wagers on dozens of sports, from football and basketball to boxing and golf.
Economic Impact of Gambling in the USA
Gambling is a multi-billion-dollar industry, and many have noted gaming’s positive economic impact. According to the premier national industry body, the American Gaming Association, over $29.98 billion of gambling revenue was generated in 2020 alone. This has generated considerable tax revenues for states across the US. The gaming industry is also a major employer, whether in terms of jobs in land-based casino resorts and retail sportsbooks, or in the offices of online operators.
While gaming’s positive economic repercussions are clearly measurable, the social impact of legal gambling in America has been a thornier issue. Problem gambling is the most prominent concern when it comes to monitoring social impact, with worries raised about the often devastating consequences of compulsive casino gaming and sports betting. This is why the American Gaming Association advocates for a greater understanding of safer gambling practices across the board.
Gambling has also been a divisive issue in American politics. Heated debate between politicians and campaigners has seen some highlighting gaming’s positive economic impact, and others stressing the sometimes negative social impact. While American gaming sites have rolled out in many states, the issue is still being thrashed out by politicians and legislators in other states, and it will likely remain entirely off the cards in some.