- HILDA study reveals $1,240-per-person gambling spend
- Lotteries most popular, but poker sees highest spending
- Men aged 65-74 most likely to participate in gambling
An Australian survey titled “Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia” has revealed some interesting statistics for the gambling industry Down Under – a nation which likes a wager like no other.
It has identified the average spend per consumer by game and by age group.
The survey relates to 2014-15 spending, across the country’s AU $22.7 billion (US $17.9 billion) gambling market.
It shows that $1,240 (US $982) was spent on gambling for every adult in the nation – though only around 39.1% actually gamble on at least a monthly basis. This suggests that among those who do gamble, the average spend is increasing.
The Economist reported earlier this year that Australians were the world’s biggest gamblers.
Problem gambling remains at expected levels
The HILDA report shows that gambling spend and engagement far exceed levels in other nations – but it also notes that problem gambling rates are in line with international averages.
Close to 1.1% of the population has a significant gambling problem, which is similar to levels reported in 1999 and shows no major rise.
Gambling addiction is more likely to occur with male players than female ones, with the HILDA survey noting that 1.5% of men and 0.8% of women have an identified gambling problem. This might be due to the fact that men are far more likely to engage in gambling, with over half of those aged 45 and over playing at least once a month.
Link between smoking, drinking and gambling
The Australian survey also noted a link between rates of problem gambling and self-reported smoking or drinking.
It suggests that players who take more risks in their personal life are more likely to take risks when gambling – leading to a greater incidence of addiction. High-income respondents are far more likely to partake in gambling activities. However, the results suggest that this group is less susceptible to gambling problems.
Outlook positive for Australian gambling?
While efforts still need to be made to reduce the 1.1% addiction rate, the HILDA study is generally positive about the Australian gambling industry.
Spending is up, but safety standards have not fallen, and there is clearly a strong appetite for gambling among Australian consumers.
Though casino and betting brands still have a way to go if they want to attract younger players, the older market is holding strong and happy to spend.
Lotteries and scratchcards remain the most popular betting activities by a clear mile, but poker and slot machines, known locally as pokies are not too far behind – and sports betting also remains a steady, stable market.
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