New figures have been released recently from the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC), which display a year-on-year decline in the British gambling industry’s Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) – the first of its kind ever recorded. The decline of 0.3% in the year leading up to March 31, 2019 saw a total GGY of £14.36 billion, while the revenue of the remote gambling sector fell by 0.6% to £5.3 billion.
The UK’s online gambling sector has actually been on the rise since it became active, and the report of the 0.6% decline is the first one to have made the history books. It’s a slightly larger figure than what was reported for the 12-month period leading up to September of 2018, and the next market report should come in May 2020.
Of the GGY reported on, the online gambling sector contributed 37.1% of the total amount. It was casino games that contributed the most to that figure, bringing in a total of £3.11 billion in GGY – a 6% year-on-year decrease. The yield of digital slots rose by 5.7% though, finishing at a total of £2.12 billion. What’s more, the game of online roulette saw a great results, in terms of both its turnover and its GGY. The latter of these finished off at a total of £448.2 million.
The Retail Sector Suffers
It wasn’t only the online sectors that found themselves suffering in the UK. The retail area also found itself on the decline. The trend for falling GGY continued, with a £3.25 billion figure for 2018/19 registered. This came from a decline in land-based casino activity, which reduced by 10.3% to £1.06 billion, although the National Lottery participation rose by 2.4% to £3.08 billion.
According to the UKGC, there was an increase in the number of online account registrations, although a 9.3% decline was registered in the number of active online accounts.
The report released by the UKGC is the final one that provides figures prior to the introduction of the implementation of the new £2 maximum betting stake on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) in the country. When it comes to those machines, the GGY fell by less than 1% to £1.83 billion in the 2018/19 period noted. Category B2 machines fell by almost a third to £1.15 billion, although the Category B3 machines, which are actually the ones known as FOBTs, saw a huge increase in GGY. They registered a total of £670.8 million, despite the fact that their maximum stakes had already been cut to the aforementioned £2 maximum.
Internet sports betting activity also fell by 10% as far as GGY is concerned, to £2.03 billion. That figure comes even though there was a 2.7% increase in stakes. Football remains as the most popular sport for betting on in the UK, but the yield from this sector actually fell by 1.5% to £991.2 million, even with stakes rising to 5.2% – most likely due to the activity surrounding the 2018 FIFA World Cup.