Most Lotteries See Declining Sales in Tough Economic Times
State lotteries are reporting declining sales as tough economic times have resulted in many people cutting back on gambling expenses.
David Gale of the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries told the USA Today that the current economic conditions are the most likely reason that many state lotteries have seen a decrease in sales.
The USA Today reports that according to a 2008 Gallop Poll, half of Americans purchase lottery tickets, whether it is scratch-off tickets or numbers games. They spend nearly $60 billion resulting in an $18 million profit for local governments. The profit is generally used for education, transit and other services.
Some of the steeper declines include: California, down 5 percent; Florida, down 7 percent; Indiana, down 10 percent; Iowa, down 4 percent and Kansas, down 4 percent.
Kathryn Bensborn, executive director of the State Lottery Commission of Indiana, told the USA Today that lottery is viewed as entertainment, thus making the lottery expendable in a consumer’s viewpoint.
Alex Traverso, spokesman for the California Lottery, told the USA Today that gas prices have also been an issue. More people are using mass transit and not going to gas stations where lottery tickets are most commonly purchased.
Not all state lotteries are reporting declines. The Minnesota Lottery has reported a 6 percent increase in sales in the past year.