Economic Indicators Down in May from 2019

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The Thoroughbred Racing Economic indicators for the month of May released by Equibase Thursday reflected the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, which halted racing in March. Including worldwide commingled wagering on U.S. races, wagering was down 30.16% ($908,504,654) from May of 2019 (1,300,923,869). Other figures that showed marked decreases in 2020:

• U.S. Purses – $31,971.002 (-72.39%)
• U.S. Race days – 123 (-450)
• U.S. Races – 1,059 (-70.99%)
• U.S. Starts – 9,145 (-64.77%)

Figures which showed increases over the corresponding period in 2019 included: Average Field Size, increasing 21.44% from 7.11 in 2019 to 8.64 this year. Also showing gains was Average Wagering Per Race Day, up $155.50% to $7,386,217 from $2,890,942 and Average Purses per Race Day was up negligibly to $259,927 from $257,282 in 2019.

Year-to-date figures from corresponding periods in 2019 and 2020 showed similar trends. Wagering on U.S. races decreased 13.34% to $4,057,074,219, while U.S. purses dropped by 40.60% to $254,693,053 in 2020. Race days fell from 1,605 to 1,001 and races also showed a significant drop from 13,552 to 8,421. Average wagering per day increased by 38.94% to $4,053,021, while average purses decreased by 4.77% to $254,439.

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