UK problem gambling rates drop 0.2% but data shows higher intensity amongst  16-24s 

Year-on-year problem gambling rates have continued to decline, according to the latest data sets published by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) monitoring gambling prevalence.  

The latest survey results covering the 12-month period up to June 2022 indicated that general problem gambling rates have further declined from 0.4% in 2021 to 0.2% in 2022.

Results were gathered from the Commission’s quarterly survey on a sample of 4,018 applicants, reflecting the make-up of the UK’s adult population.  

General trends for the year to June 2022 reflected that overall participation in any gambling activity (in the last four weeks) remained statistically stable at 43%.

On problem gambling rates, the UKGC gathers data through mini-screened phone interviews using Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI) on participants’ replies to whether they have gambled in the past 12 months.

The survey’s breakdown of problem gambling participation indicated a 0.3% and 0.1% split between males and females – with participants aged between 16-24 marked as the most vulnerable group with 0.8% 

Except for the 16-24 age range, data reflected that year-on-year problem gambling rates had declined across all age groups.

Reporting on general moderate risk rates, the survey indicated a further decline from 1.5% recorded in 2021 to 1% as of June this year.

However, mirroring problem gambling rates, the moderate risk category registered a significant rise from 0.6% to 3.6% in participants in the 16-24 age range.

General survey responses saw the online gambling participation rate remained statistically stable at 26% compared to the year to June 2021.

The Commission reflected that “following two years of disruption and restrictions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, overall gambling participation remains lower than pre-covid levels, especially in relation to the proportion of people gambling in person.”

At the start of the year, the UKGC launched a consultation, seeking to improve its research methodologies examining gambling prevalence.

Feedback was sought on the Commission’s handling of research methods and data that have been conducted through surveys produced in accordance with the standards set out by the Government Statistical Service in the ‘Code of Practice for Statistics’.

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