The state of Maryland has hit the jackpot after booking a record $1.25 billion revenue from the combined lottery ticket sales and contributions from its six casinos during the full fiscal year 2018.
On Friday, Maryland Lottery and Gaming announced that state lottery surpassed the $2 billion mark in sales for the first time in FY 2018 and set a new profit record of $575.6 million.
The state reportedly paid players a new all-time record of $1.247 billion in prizes in FY 2018 after its lottery sales rose 4.2 percent to a record $2.043 billion. This means that the state Lottery shelled out an average of more than $3.4 million a day in prizes during FY2018.
Sales of instant tickets rose 11 percent to an all-time record of $750.9 million in FY 2018 from the previous high of $676.8 million set in FY2017. This is the fourth consecutive year that instant sales posted a double-digit increase, according to Maryland Lottery.
Pick 4 remained Maryland Lottery’s undisputed most popular game, setting an all-time sales record of $296.2 million. Another game that set an all-time record was the computer-animated horse racing game Racetrax. Data from the state regulator showed that Racetrax generated an all-time sales record of $192.6 million.
Retailers also benefited from rising lottery sales. The state regulator noted that the retailers’ sales commission grew 5.4 percent to an all-time high of $153.7 million in the 12 months that ended June 30, 2018 from the previous record of $145.9 million set in FY2017.
The average commission paid to the Lottery’s nearly 4,500 retailers was more than $34,000, according to Maryland Lottery.
Lady luck also smiled at Maryland’s six state casinos during FY 2018. Data from the state regulator showed that the state’s brick and mortar facilities beat last year’s gaming revenue by 18.2 percent to a record of $1.68 billion in FY 2018.
Casino gaming revenue contributed $676.7 million to the state, including $496.7 million to the Maryland Education Trust Fund, according to the state regulator.
However, Maryland casino revenues continued to decline for the second consecutive month after hitting a record of $156.5 million in May.
Ocean Downs Casino posted the biggest growth in July, when its revenue jumped 34 percent to $8.7 million year-on-year. MGM National Harbor, on the other hand, took the most money after its revenue increased 14.9 percent to $58.3 million in July 2018 from the previous year period.
MGM’s closest competitor, Live! Casino & Hotel, chalked a $47.7 million gaming revenue, up 1 percent from a year ago, while Rocky Gap Casino Resort’s gaming revenue inched up 1.5 percent to $5.2 million in July 2018.
The biggest loser among the six Maryland casinos in July 2018 was Baltimore’s Horseshoe Casino, which saw its gaming revenue drop 11.1 percent to $20.5 million. Hollywood Casino Perryville’s gaming revenue also dropped 6.7 percent to $6.1 million in July 2018.
Meanwhile, the combined total of $1.252 billion in state contributions is a 12.1% increase from the previous record of $1.117 billion in FY 2017. The Maryland Gaming Control Agency’s operating expenses remained low at 3.3% of sales on the Lottery side, and 1% of total gaming revenues for the casino program.
“It was a great year all around, and we couldn’t be prouder of the contribution that the Lottery and the casinos made to important state programs,” said Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency Director Gordon Medenica. “It’s especially gratifying to see both the Lottery and the casinos growing simultaneously.”