Lottery is Aussies’ gambling favourite

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The total number of gambling participants has fallen in the past 15 years. But lottery and scratchie tickets are way out in front, according to Roy Morgan’s latest research.

In total, 10.6 million Australians aged 18-plus (55.4 per cent) gambled in the 12 months to June 2018. This included 8.6 million (44.8 per cent) who bought a lottery or scratchie ticket.

In terms of participants, this puts lottery and scratchie tickets leagues ahead of poker machines, betting, keno and casino table games.

These are the latest findings from Roy Morgan’s ‘Gambling Currency Report’.

Past three years

According to the report, 8.6 million Australians bought a lottery or scratchie ticket in the past three years. This number has remained consistent, although it hides differences in buying patterns.

For example, 7.7 million Australians bought a lottery ticket of any sort in the year to June 2018 encompassing Monday/Wednesday/Saturday Lotto, Powerball, Oz Lotto or other lottery tickets. This is down from 7.9 million three years ago.

By contrast, more Australians are now buying OzLotto tickets, up 0.4 million to 3.3 million. In addition, more are buying other lottery tickets including Lotto Strike, Pools, Keno, Super 66 and Cash 3 – up marginally by 0.1 million to 0.9 million.

Aussies bought fewer scratchie tickets over the past three years. The number fell by 0.2 million to three million Australians in the year to June 2018.

Age- and state-related differences

The Roy Morgan report also analysed the data according to participants’ ages and where they lived.

It found that more than half of Australians aged 50-64 years (55.6 per cent) buy lottery or scratchie tickets in an average three months. This figure contrasts with only 12.6 per cent of 18-24 year-olds.

In terms of states, the report found that WA and Queensland residents buy more lottery/scratchie tickets than anyone else. Nearly half of Western Australians (48.6 per cent) and more than two-fifths of Queenslanders (43.2 per cent) buy a lottery or scratchie ticket in an average three months.

High participation, low spend

Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine said, “The participation rate (for lottery and scratchie tickets) far outstrips other forms of gambling.

“However, the spending patterns on lottery and scratchie tickets mean lottery and scratchie tickets take up only about 13 per cent of Australians’ overall gambling spend – far below the proportion spent on poker machines (over 60 per cent) and also below the proportion spent on betting, which amounts to about 17 per cent of gambling spend.

“Clearly, one of the biggest drivers of spending on lottery tickets is the prospect of huge jackpots of up to $100 million or more, as seen recently for both OzLotto and Powerball.

“And judging by the analysis, it is Australians over 50 years of age who seem to think they might be luckier than their younger peers!”