Australian Players Generate World’s Largest Gambling Losses on Pokies

Recently, the gambling participation rates in Australia have reached extraordinary levels mostly thanks to electronic gambling machines, also known as pokies. According to a Government statistics, poker machines account for over 50% of the individual annual gambling losses of local citizens, an amount estimated to approximately AU$24 billion. Australians’ gambling losses generated on a per-capita basis, have been estimated to amount to over AU$1,200 annually.

The analytics company H2 Gambling Capital compared the gambling losses generated by local people and residents of other countries, and it turned out that Australian adults’ losses were about 50% higher than the ones generated by US and Singapore residents.

With these losses constantly increasing, and the boost registered in gambling participation rates, some organisations have called for more serious measures to be taken in terms of gambling operators and their services. So-called pokies that are similar to standard slot machines available in casinos worldwide have faced a wave of increased criticism, blaming them for being too addictive to customers.

However, poker machines have not been the only form of gambling that has been widely-popular in Australia. About 20% of the local adults’ gambling losses are generated at casinos. However, anti-pokies campaigners insist that the electronic machines are much more profitable to gambling operators and way too attractive to gamblers.

According to Angela Rintoul who worked as a researcher at the Australian Gambling Research Centre, the fact that poker machines have been embedded in the local communities without being restricted to casinos only, as in many other jurisdictions around the world.

Australia Has Some of the Highest Gambling Participation Rates

In November 2017, the Australian Government released some figures related to the Australian players’ gambling habits. The study, which was carried out by the Australian Gambling Research Centre (AGRC), showed that approximately 6.8 million Australians are regular gamblers. Their number represented about 39% of the local adult population.

As previously reported by Casino Guardian, most regular gamblers in Australia preferred to spend their money on lotteries, with about 76% of the afore-mentioned 6.8 million participating in lotto gambling. Instant scratch tickets were actually the second most-preferred gambling activity, with a total of 22% of the Australian gamblers having chosen this form of gambling. According to the results of the survey, which measured the gambling participation rates of Australians in 2015, poker machines were preferred by 21% of the local players.

Also, about a month ago, Australia has been reported as the country with the largest gambling losses per capita in the world. Australia has also been reported as the country featuring the largest number of pokies per person on a global scale, excluding special gambling hubs such as Monaco or Macau. Reports have shown that one poker machine was available for 14 Australian residents in 2015.

In addition, poker machines, which are currently regulated by each state, rather than by the federal government, are described as some of the largest revenue boosters of the states. Western Australia is the only state where gambling operators are not allowed to operate poker machines outside casinos.

  • Author

Daniel Williams

Daniel Williams has started his writing career as a freelance author at a local paper media. After working there for a couple of years and writing on various topics, he found his interest for the gambling industry.
Daniel Williams
Casino Guardian covers the latest news and events in the casino industry. Here you can also find extensive guides for roulette, slots, blackjack, video poker, and all live casino games as well as reviews of the most trusted UK online casinos and their mobile casino apps.

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