At present, playing legal online poker on a regulated New Jersey site can be a frustrating ordeal. Games do not run round the clock, tournament guarantees are on the low side (and dipping), and low-to-mid stakes No Limit Hold’em games dominate cash game lobbies. But with online poker at the forefront of the legislative conversation in both New York and Pennsylvania, that could change in relatively swift fashion.
Admittedly, there are still a lot of pieces that need to fall into place. But should NY/PA pull the trigger, then a liquidity sharing compact between NJ and its neighbors to the north and west feels like a logical next step. Here’s a glance at what the first legal US online poker triumvirate might look like.
Unfortunately, there is no straightforward means of predicting average cash game liquidity for the NY/PA/NJ online poker network. The closest comparison point is the ring-fenced market of Spain, which boasts a similar population — 46.8 million versus 41.5 million collectively for NY/PA/NJ. Problem is, these are two very different markets.
Spain features a significantly lower GDP per capita and internet penetration rate than the northeastern US. The nation’s online poker tax rate of 20 percent is also higher than our predicted mixed tax rate of approximately 17 percent for NY/PA/NJ.
Using Spanish market liquidity as a starting point, we derive that NY/PA/NJ would average approximately 975 concurrent cash game players at this time of year. That figure strikes as remarkably low.
More at Online Poker Report