The gaming regulation campaign has significantly intensified in the United Kingdom. The number of open investigations evidences this as opposed to recent years. Betting firms had to pay fines of 19.6 million pounds in 2018 for failure to protect problem gambling in the United Kingdom. The gambling commission allegedly did more than 150 investigations in 2018 to 2019 financial year resulting in sanctions and penalties. Some of the firms, which fell prey to the ongoing crackdown, include Paddy Power and Daub Alderney. The fines from these two almost reach 10 million pounds. The government also reduced the minimum stakes on the fixed odds betting terminals from 100 to 2 pounds. Bookies have warned this move will lead to the closure of stores and job losses.
The gambling commission did state that it found examples of customers being allowed to gamble on significant revenue sums in a short time frame. This is beyond affordability without any intervention from operators. On the other hand, the total fine amounts set were at 0.13 percent of the 14.5 billion dollars of profit made from the industry in the past year. It is also supposedly 1.6 percent of the amount of gambling-related harm allegedly costs the United Kingdom on an annual basis. The treasury got 13 million pounds of the penalties and the rest went to compensate consumers. The findings of the commission within the enforcement report claimed companies failed to see clients at risk. It also illustrated there were repeated examples of the customers being allowed to gamble on significant sums.
Problem gambling in the United Kingdom
Betting operators are mostly viewed as enables of gambling problems in the UK market due to previous behavior. It is within their best interest to have gamblers get more into debt even if they may not have the money to pay it back. Studies have even shown the gambling companies generate the bulk of their profit from a small portion of gamblers. This has prompted campaigners to call for regulations to stop the people from betting when there is a problem. For example, financial institutions in some countries have opted to curb the use of credit and debit cards for gambling codes. That means players cannot pay transactions using bank transfers and credit cards from certain firms for gambling usage. They have to pay via PayPal or cash. The purpose is to reduce the options problem gamblers have to spend money while using the betting platforms. When the avenues to lose money reduce, so does the potential financial damage.
Effects of the new policies
The news outlets are sensing the increasing regulatory intensity from the gambling commission and its impact on the betting operators. They are fast hemorrhaging money through penalties and closures. Allegedly, they are now reporting that William Hill is on the verge of closing hundreds of shops. According to them, the business is slowly becoming unviable. Of course, it is sensationalist to claim this in one of the largest gambling markets in the world, but it shows the signs of the times.
Gambling operators continue to experience the onslaught of the gambling commission in the United Kingdom. The theme of persecution is related to problem gambling. The majority of the revenue received by betting firms comes from the demographic that would be the problem gamblers. They do not incline to assist them in becoming more responsible. Penalties given to the betting companies are ultimately futile because there is no way they will surrender their most profitable market to therapy. The commission is better off tackling the problem from the financial institutions and making it hard for problem gamblers to make more than a given number of withdrawals at for gambling codes.
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