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SUPERBOWL BETTING GENERATES $119 MILLION IN NEVADA WAGERS
The Superbowl weekend was a good one for Nevada, one of only four US states that is permitted to accept sports betting wagers.
Sports fans bet a record $119.4 million at Nevada casinos and books on the NFL Super Bowl, with unaudited Gaming Control Board tallies indicating that sportsbooks made an unprecedented profit of $19.7 million on the action, reports the Associated Press news agency.
The Denver Broncos started out as a 2.5-point favourite, but the Seattle Seahawks won 43-8.
Oddsmakers said Nevada was flooded with wagers on the favored team and its veteran quarterback Peyton Manning, who was named the NFL's Most Valuable Player for the 2013 season the day before the game.
The previous record for the handle, set last year, was $98.9 million.The last record for casino hold, or profit, was set in 2005, when sportsbooks won $15.4 million, AP notes.
Nevada land casinos retained an average of 16.5 percent of the millions legally wagered, far more than the average hold during the past decade.
Nevada sportsbooks have lost only twice on the Super Bowl in the past 20 years, most recently in 2008, when the New York Giants beat the New England Patriots, costing casinos a record $2.6 million (see previous InfoPowa reports).
The handle, or wagers placed, has increased annually for nine out of the last ten years.