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The British have lost more than £13 billion in FOBT

The British have lost more than £13 billion in FOBT

The Gambling Commission of Great Britain has provided information that a record £13.8bn was lost by British gamblers for the period from October 2015 to September 2016, which is 2.9% more compared to the previous period.

The British have lost more than £13 billion in FOBT

In the Commission’s report, it was stated that 1.82 billion pounds of the total amount were lost by players through FOBT gaming terminals (fixed-rate betting terminals), which are usually located at the betting offices. Compared with the previous period, this indicator grew by 9%.

Data on gambling losses in Britain leaked in the media from the report of the gambling commission, which should be published in a few weeks. October 2016, the Minister of Sport, Media and Tourism of the United Kingdom Tracey Crouch announced the results of the study of the large spread of FOBT in Britain and its highly addictive impact.

Crouch said at the time, that it was significant for gambling regulations to “strike the right balance between allowing the industry to contribute to the economy and enable people to bet responsibly whilst ensuring consumers and communities are protected.”

While online gambling accounts for one-third of the total loss, a record £ 1.7 billion was lost by British citizens on FOBTs in 2015, as they players could bet £100 every 20 seconds on igames like roulette.

The FOBT terminals have recently become the subject of heated discussions in Great Britain on the part of the Labor Party and the Liberal Democratic Party, which have actively supported limiting the amount of the maximum stake from £100 to £2, thereby helping to reduce the number of problem players.

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A recent study found that since 2008, the British have lost more than £ 11 billion FOBTs. Approximately 40% of the losses is on the account of 300 thousand problem players, each of which lost an average of $ 19.31 thousand. Since 2008, players have been betting a total of $ 64.38 billion. This indicates that on average, everyone spent $ 10.3 thousand.

The Gambling Commision stressed that the losses of players on FOBTs are about £5 million daily throughout the year and this tendency is likely to grow. The figures show that although the amount of the gaming machines increased only by 9%, the losses on them grew by 73%, which proves that stakes became higher.

Carolyn Harris, an MP for Swansea East in the General Election 2017, campaigned for a reduction in stakes on FOBTs. “Losses on FOBTs are spiralling out of control. Every year more and more is lost on these addictive machines, so the next government must act to reduce the maximum stake to £2 a spin.”

Bookmakers, who receive over 50% of their income from the machines, defend the FOBTs. But according to representatives of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling, the amounts lost on FOBTs could provide a salary of thousands of jobs.

Association of British bookmakers said, “The increase in revenue from gaming machines in betting shops of 3% [compared with the last report] is in line with the average growth in revenue across the whole of the gambling industry (3%) and growth in the economy as a whole.”

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