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The Worldwide Economic Impact Of Gambling

Gambling has long held a commonplace in human society, in fact, humans gambling is one of the most mutual behaviors of humans traced back through almost every race and origin. And in the modern age, not much has changed, as almost every country on earth has some sort of legalized gaming. So, what is the economic impact of gambling? Is it good for society, or bad? Unfortunately, there is no clear answer as gambling is both beneficial, and detrimental for society.

How Popular Is Gambling?

Betting money on the outcomes of dice and other games is perhaps one of the most popular pastimes of all times. In 2018, the world gambling market netted a staggering $449 billion dollars across numerous countries, most notably the US, China, Australia, and Japan. Unsurprisingly, these numbers are continuing to grow with each passing year, and experts estimate that by 2022, the world gambling market will be worth over $565 billion.

If the numbers aren’t enough for you, think of it this way, there is an entire portion of the travel industry built on bringing people to casinos. In the US, almost all airlines have routes to Las Vegas and Atlantic City. In China, no airline can survive without serving Macau. People are actually paying money to fly to a destination in order to gamble, it’s just that popular. Not only that, but people will actually fly from the continent of Europe in order to gamble in the fabulous Las Vegas. And prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, numerous European airlines offered nonstop flights to the gaming hub.

Although the pandemic has wreaked havoc on a number of these gaming cities, it didn’t stop the popularity of gambling. Experts estimate that during the 2020 pandemic, gaming actually increased as people took their gambling to online gaming websites. And with less oversight and cash needed, people were actually able to spend more than they would in a casino. In 2020 alone, it is estimated that these websites netted over $50 billion, and it doesn’t show any sign of stopping, in fact the number of people engaged in online gaming only continues to grow with each passing day.

The Positives

Well, all this gaming money has to go somewhere right? And it does. The entire city of Las Vegas is built because of legalized gambling. Allowing gaming in the county has built an entire city of jobs, homes, and lives. Just having the casinos there has also brought in additional jobs needed to work for the casino workers such as doctors and grocery stores. And if gambling wasn’t allowed, you better believe there would be no reason to visit the Nevada desert. And not only does gaming create jobs, it creates a number of entry level jobs which are easy to get without an education—something which is a growing problem in a state like the US. And these workers in turn spend the money in the local economy as well as in other economies around the US. Gambling has also created a new job which could otherwise never exist known as a professional gambler.

Even online casinos help the economy, mostly by the taxes they pay to the government in order to remain open. These taxes go towards supporting things like education, social programs, and roads within the state which collects them. Without these funds, especially in states like Nevada, there would simply be no money to keep these programs afloat. In the UK, the government is so dependent on gambling to fund taxes they can’t shut down gambling, ever, because the government would quickly go bankrupt.

The Negatives

Honestly, overall gambling is good for society, and there aren’t many high-level reasons that gaming could be considered bad. And thus, the negative economic impact of gambling is mostly on a personal level. And the effect of this impact depends on the person. In most countries, the average person only gambles a few hundred dollars a year. That is, except for Australia, where the average individual loses $1000 a year on gambling, but either way, most people don’t lose enough gambling to have a significant impact on their lives.

In most countries, gambling is treated like a game, all for fun, and most people spend a bit of their extra cash in hope of growing it. When it doesn’t happen, they simply walk away and the game is done. However, there is a small portion of society whom can’t stop gambling when they start, and this is when the issues arise. People who can’t stop gambling are known as gambling addicts, and when this happens people have been known to bet their entire life savings, car, and even their house in hopes of winning money back. If they end up losing everything (which does frequently happen) this can lead to them turning to criminal activities in order to attain more money to gamble. Unfortunately, it only gets even worse from there. Gambling addictions have been known to break up families, lead to mental health issues, and even drive the individual to suicide. 

The Gambling Industry Is Growing

Although the above negatives may seem bad, gambling really is on the rise, and many governments do need the tax revenue from gaming to stay afloat. Some countries in Africa, who were previously against gaming, have since realized this, and opened casinos of their own. And other countries where casinos don’t yet exist are likely to follow.

Positives and negatives aside, gambling is here to stay, especially as it grows even easier and you can play from the comfort of your own home with your computer. Many people even think that we now need gaming institutions more than ever to help the post COVID-19 world’s economic recovery. And you better believe the UK government won’t be killing off its fattest cash cow anytime soon.  

Either way, if you want to indulge in gambling, go right ahead, after all, it’s great for the economy. Just make sure you, or a family member, doesn’t get too involved or obsessed with the game. If you find yourself unable to stop gambling, there is likely a number you can look up in your country for help, and please contact that number right away. 

For more information on betting, gambling, and how to have the best odds in a casino, check out the blog at

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