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Victorians lose $2.572 billion on pokies in 2014-2015

The Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) has released figures on pokies expenditure for the 2014–2015 financial year.

In total, $2.572 billion was lost in Victoria on the pokies between 1 July 2014 and 30 June 2015. This is an increase of 2.7 per cent or $68 million from 2013–2014 and is the highest amount lost on pokies since 2011–2012. This increase came despite a very small decrease in the number of machines operating over the year compared to 2013-14

The increase in real terms, adjusted for inflation, is 1.24 per cent. This is the first increase in real terms since 2008-09 and the largest increase in real terms compared to the previous year, since 2004–2005. In that year losses increased by 2.43 per cent.

While there has been an overall long term decline in losses on pokies of around 24 per cent since 2000-01 the factors driving this are not clear. There is no evidence that the rate of problem gambling has dropped or risen in any significant manner during this time. Research has made links between falls in the amount lost with the introduction of a ban on smoking in venues 2002 and the removal of ATMs from venues in 2012.

Download the VCGLR's data

See The Guardian's interactive map of pokies losses by local government area. You can see total expenditure for an LGA, and the spend per adult in the area. Note that the Guardian figures are based on 2014 population estimates and calculate the ratio of machines to all Victorians. The VCGLR provides figures of poker machines per Victorian adult, but these ratios are unlikely to be released until the Australian Bureau of Statistics releases its 2015 population estimate. The ratio of machines per adult will be higher than that shown on the Guardian's map.

The VCGLR provides a map of venues. To see where pokies venues are, go to the map and click the tab in the right top corner labelled "Current Active Dual Licences". The map will then show only venues that have pokies.

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