For the average person, the horse racing industry takes center stage once per year with the Kentucky Derby. If there’s a chance for a Triple Crown winner, then the public might continue on through the Belmont Stakes. Many people don’t realize, however, that the horse racing industry is a very large and very important part of our local, our state, and even our national economy.
Popularity of Horse Racing
There are 9.2 million horses in the United States.
The last major survey of the horse racing industry was completed in 2005, but the information is still valid and useful. The national impact of these statistics shows why horses are and will always be part of American culture, even if for some the only reason why horses exist is to race them and bet on them! Here are some initial horses racing industry statistics to consider.
Affected Lives by Horse Racing
1. The horse racing industry is responsible for the creation of over 450,000 full time jobs.
2. The horse racing industry pays over $1.9 billion in taxes every year to all levels of government, including local governments.
3. Spending by employers and employees within this industry accounts for another 1.4 million full time jobs.
Takeaway: The impact that horse racing has is undisputed. Responsible for nearly 2 million FTEs and an unknown amount of self-employment opportunities that weren’t listed in the 2005 survey, there’s a good chance that someone you know right now has part of their income supplemented in some way thanks to the horse racing industry.
Unique Facts on the Horse Racing Industry
1. Over 70% of horse owners who race their horses live in communities that have a population size of 50,000 residents or less.
2. The average horse racing owner has an income between $25,000 to $75,000 per year. 28% of horse owners have an average annual income that reaches six figures.
3. Over 2 million people own horses in the United States.
4. The horse racing industry annually contributes more than $100 billion worth of spending to every level of the economy and in many different sectors as well.
5. The average horse owner owns 4 horses, with 9.2 million horses currently living in the United States, but only about 10% of those horses are actually racing horses.
6. There are owners of racing horses in all 50 states. There are 45 states that have over 20,000 racing horses residing within their borders.
7. Nearly 4.6 million people work within the horse racing industry every day in some way.
8. Horse racing events in the United States are some of the most attended sporting events each year.
Takeaway: When horses are taken care of properly, they are a wonderful addition to our communities and they provide a needed economic stimulus every year. A vast majority of horse owners are fully responsible, train their horses well, and provide for them in every way. It is often said that dogs are man’s best friend, but horses put up a strong competition for that title!