Gambling continues to drop during UK lockdown

The data comes from surveys carried out in each week during lockdown.
The data comes from surveys carried out in each week during lockdown.

The UK Gambling Commission has published more data showing the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown on gambling behaviour.

UK.- The Gambling Commission has released more data that shows a continued drop in gambling during the UK’s Covid-19 lockdown.

The report shows data for April and early May collected from the largest online operators and market research firm YouGov’s Covid-19 tracker, which surveys around 2,000 people each week.

It offers more extensive insight into the impact on gambling behaviour following initial data published by the Commission last month. 

The data suggests that overall gambling in the UK has continued to drop during lockdown, with the exception of online casinos.

The percentage of people who responded on May 6 – 7 that they had gambled in the previous four weeks was 28.4 per cent, a drop from 32 per cent of the people who responded on April 16  – 17.

The percentage of respondents who said they had not gambled increased every week on each of the four times the survey was analysed.

The population classified as “engaged gamblers” – those gambling three or more times in the past month – fell from 2.0 per cent in mid-April to an average of 1.4 per cent in subsequent surveys.

Only online casinos saw a significant increase, with 2.2 per cent of respondents saying they used online slots in the four weeks ending May 6 – 7, compared to 1.8 per cent for the four weeks up to April 16 – 17.

Non-slot online casino games also saw an increase, from 1 per cent of respondents on April 16 – 17 and 1.4 per cent on May 8.

The only other gambling segment to see any increase was esports betting, which saw a small increase from 0.4 per cent to 0.5 per cent.

The National Lottery remains the most prevalent form of gambling. The survey found that 22.7 per cent of respondents said they had bought tickets sometime in the four weeks ending May 8, but this is a drop of 25.6 per cent on the response in the first survey on April 16 – 17.

Sports betting also fell with almost no sports to bet on. Only 1.3 per cent said they had bet on sports in the four weeks ending May 8, down from 2.8 per cent in the four weeks to April 17. Virtual sports also fell in popularity, from 2.5 per to 1.5 per cent.

See the full report here

The Gambling Commission followed the publication of its first series of data on the impact of Covid-19 by introducing a series of tighter measures on gaming.

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