FOBT Limits May Affect UK Bookies Bottom LineJake Cooper | 21 Sep 2017
The recently proposed changes to UK-based fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) have now been estimated to have the potential to cost local bookmakers over £150 million each year. This shocking new statistic was published in a recent article about the fixed odds gambling machines in the Financial Times.
Several pressure groups and UK Parliament members have campaigned for the maximum bet limits on FOBTs to be reduced from £100 to just a mere £2. Reports have now suggested that a compromise could result, with the new figure resting at £30 to please all parties involved.
This compromised figure will still have the power to cost UK bookmakers an extra £150 million per annum, with Ladbrokes Coral already expecting to lose £87 million alone.
Ongoing FOBT Review To Conclude Next Month
The UK hosts some of the world’s largest gambling companies, and each one of those firms contributes millions of Pounds in state revenue each year. However, it is widely known that over the past few years, an increasing number of concerns have been voiced about FOBTs.
The nature of the games FOBTs offer and the growing number of terminals in areas with high rates of unemployment has concerned the current Chancellor of the Exchequer, Phillip Hammond.
Following a report released in 2015 by the Department of Media, Culture and Sport, a number of ethical questions have arisen over the gambling machines, with the report highlighting these issues to Parliament. The state has since begun an ongoing review, which will be completed next month.
Future of British FOBTs Still Unclear
This review has been designed to investigate the claims that FOBTs are uniquely addictive to problem gamblers, or if they could be targeting vulnerable players in some way. Pressure groups and Parliament are both eagerly awaiting the results, which could assist lawmakers to lay this continuous issue to rest once and for all.
The news of the massive potential loss of revenues for FOBT operators in the UK is also expected to heat up the debate, and with the review expected to be wrapped up in just a few weeks’ time, it is still unclear what steps will be taken to ensure players’ safety and make FOBTs more acceptable to the general British public.