Tennessee must hold 10% of all handle

  • Tennessee’s sports betting rules and regulations have a 10% hold requirement on all handle that is then taxed and given to the Tennessee Education Lottery (TEL).
  • This hold could lead to less attractive odds and bets offered to sports bettors of the Volunteer State.
  • The 10% hold rate rule will not become effective until 2021 for all Tennessee sports wagering platforms.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – After more than a year, Tennessee sportsbooks finally launched this past weekend and while at the moment it’s a non-issue, operators will have to figure out how to deal with the state’s rule of a 10% hold on all activities in the coming year.

There are a number of ways that this could be done but all of them would likely affect the consumer. However, if operators fail to meet this requirement, they face having to pay up to a $25,000 fine.

What Can Be Done To Hold 10% Of Handle

The price of the fine is written into the rules and regulations of the Tennessee sports betting industry but the state’s appointed regulator, the Tennessee Education Lottery (TEL), is allowed to place further undefined repercussions on any operator that doesn’t comply with the 10% hold.

How can sportsbooks follow this rule put upon their handle and still turn a profit? Live in-game betting is a great option to be able to fulfill this requirement.

To run a successful business in their market and pay 10% to the TEL, the odds placed on wagers would presumably have to take a hit. Some are predicting that for regular betting lines, sportsbooks in Tennessee would have to set odds at -125 rather than the standard -110.

This could severely hurt how much money they are able to bring in as sports bettors will shop lines and find that their competitors, be it offshore sportsbooks the black market, or other states, have better odds for bigger payout chances and wager with them instead.

With live in-game bets, there is no time to shop lines for the better offer which is the perfect situation to be able to reach the 10% hold and continue to provide the best lines for all other bets.

Parlay betting and futures are also wager types that could stand to be pushed on players to up an operator’s handle without hurting their business with odds across the board whose numbers are unsatisfactory to a gambler’s needs.

The Tennessee Sports Betting Market

The future of the Tennessee sports betting industry is still a question mark as the business has only just begun and the 10% hold rule will not be something operators will need to worry about in 2020.

As for 2021, it could go either way. Some believe sportsbooks will get players hooked with amazing odds and wagers that will slowly get dwindle as time goes on in order to hit that 10% hold in the future.

Other businesses believe it’ll be a time for innovation within companies in order to comply with the rule. Offering different promotions and rewards to get gamblers playing could help cushion the less appealing odds for bets. Bonuses are not written within the rules, which could help operators reach their hold without having to cross any boundaries.

There is still a lot to be learned in this new industry for the Volunteer State but as for the 10% hold, while no one operator has agreed on how to tackle the stipulation, they’re all in agreeance that it’s next year’s problem.

For now, they’re enjoying being open in Tennessee and getting all that Tennessee Titans’ action from avid sports fans statewide.

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