Breaking News
0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

Britain bans betting on credit cards to fight gambling addiction

Stock MarketsJan 14, 2020 03:09PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
© Reuters. A Union Jack themed Visa credit card is seen amongst Euro bank notes in this photo illustration taken in Manchester, Britain

By Kate Holton and Elizabeth Howcroft

LONDON (Reuters) - Britons will no longer be able to use credit cards to place bets under the latest move by the government to tackle problem gambling, hurting the owner of PaddyPower Betfair and its takeover partner Canada's Stars Group.

Less than a year after Britain slashed the maximum stake that can be placed on popular fixed-odds betting terminals, it said on Tuesday it would ban the country's 24 million gamblers from using credit cards to bet online or offline to rack up debt.

According to trade body UK Finance, around 800,000 Britons use credit cards to gamble. The Gambling Commission believes a quarter of those are problem gamblers - people who are addicted to gambling to try to win back their losses.

Shares of betting companies including 888 Holdings, Flutter Entertainment, the owner of Paddy Power Betfair and William Hill dropped between 0.9% and 2.5%.

Culture Minister Helen Whately said there was clear evidence of harm from consumers betting with money they don't have.

"We will not hesitate to take any further action necessary to protect people from gambling harm," she said in a statement.

Britain has a thriving gambling industry. It employs more than 100,000 people and made 14.4 billion pounds ($18.7 billion) after paying out winnings in the 2018-2019 financial year.

But the government has sought to tighten rules in recent years by capping the maximum stake on terminals, bringing in stricter age and identity checks for online gambling and expanding support for those who become addicted.

The new ban will come into effect on April 14 and apply to all online and offline gambling products apart from over-the-counter lottery tickets.

The move would likely hurt Flutter Entertainment the most - it will have under just a third of the UK online gambling and gaming market once it buys Toronto-listed Poker Stars operator Stars Group Inc (TSG), according to data from H2 Gambling Capital.

The online industry was worth an estimated 4.4 billion pounds in revenue in 2018, according to H2.

Davy Research analysts though said the ban would likely lead to a low single digit percentage drop in related revenues.

"The latest in a recent series of more onerous regulatory changes, it also acts as a further reminder that the UK opportunity is no longer what it once was," it said in a note to clients. "However, it remains a very large, (still) growing and highly cash generative market for online gaming operators."

Britons had a total of 72.1 billion pounds outstanding on credit cards in November, according to Bank of England data, down a little from a record 72.9 billion pounds struck in May.

(GRAPHIC: UK gambling companies' market share - https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/mkt/13/1007/998/uk%20gambling%20by%20company.png)

Britain bans betting on credit cards to fight gambling addiction
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind: 

  • Enrich the conversation
  • Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed.
  • Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically.
  •  Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and links within a comment will be removed
  • Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user.
  • Don’t Monopolize the Conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also believe strongly in giving everyone a chance to air their thoughts. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email