HomeInsightsGambling Commission publishes data showing impact of Covid-19 on gambling behaviour in September 2020

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The Gambling Commission has published further data showing how the easing of the Covid-19 lockdown impacted gambling behaviour in Great Britain. The data reflects the period between March and September 2020 inclusive and covers both online and in-person gambling. The latest data includes consumer research and data from Licensed Betting Operators (LBOs) found on Britain’s high streets.

The latest data for September shows that:

  • the online market grew, with a month-on-month increase of 3% in gross gambling yield (GGY), and a 7% increase in active accounts; the main driver for this was real event betting, which saw 15% growth in GGY and a 14% increase in active accounts, and is likely to have been boosted by the return of Premier League football;
  • the average session length for online slots remained steady at 21 minutes; there was a 3% decrease in the number of online slots sessions lasting longer than an hour; and
  • licensed betting operators also experienced month on month growth across some metrics, with increases of 7% in bets/spins placed and 11% in GGY (to £187m) likely to be impacted by the re-opening of all shops and the return of the Premier League.

In the last week, the Commission has written to operators to remind them of the guidance it initially issued in May to online operators setting out the need for improved affordability checks, the prevention of reverse withdrawals and restrictions on bonus offers. This was reinforced for land-based premises in June when they were allowed to reopen.

The Commission says that it continues to track Covid-19 related risk by:

  • assessing the impact of the strengthened guidance issued to operators;
  • collecting and publishing the data being gathered;
  • supporting the industry as land-based premises begin to open; and
  • where evidence identifies additional risks faced by consumers, taking further action to protect consumers.