Three in four Americans who gamble at casinos do so within a budget, according to the findings of a nationwide survey conducted on behalf of the American Gaming Association (AGA), a trade organisation and lobbying group.
The survey, published on Tuesday, showed that when American casino visitors gamble, 76 percent set a limit for their bets. A majority, about 54 percent, set a budget of less than US$200, the poll showed.
The Survey of Americans’ Attitude Toward Legalised Gaming, conducted between May 17 and 22, took into account opinions of 1,000 U.S. registered voters across political lines.
According to the survey, nearly two in three casino visitors were homeowners and 70 percent were “middle class” or “upper-middle class”. About 56 percent of the respondents were 21-49 years of age.
AGA president Geoff Freeman said the results showed the highest support ever for casinos since annual data started being collected in 2004.
“Voters across the political spectrum view casino gaming more favourably than ever before, and the vast majority recognises that casinos create jobs, strengthen communities and support local businesses,” Mr Freeman said in a statement.
The results of the survey showed that public support of casino gaming in the U.S. is at an all-time high – 57 percent. The findings also showed 87 percent of the respondents stated that gambling is an acceptable activity. Fifty-one percent said that casinos should be taxed like any other kind of businesses.
The survey results may be used by industry leaders to advocate a lower tax burden for casinos in some U.S. states, and also to push forward a more uniform gaming regulatory framework across the country. Casinos in some states have seen revenues decline as competition increases in neighbouring states.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal quoted Mr Freeman as saying the timing is right for the gaming industry to take a more active position, hinting that AGA may seek ways to lower the tax burden on casinos in states where tax rates stand at or above 50 percent of casino revenue.
The U.S. casino market has not seen much growth in recent years. The United States commercial casino industry generated an estimated US$37.83 billion in 2013, expanding by 1.3 percent from a year earlier, according to consultancy RubinBrown LLP’s Gaming Services Group.
“The U.S. has become a very mature market, you can literally drive 90 minutes in any direction from any city in the U.S. and you can bump into slot machines. You are not seeing much growth anymore,” Andrew Klebanow, partner at Global Market Advisors LLC (GMA), told GGRAsia in an interview last month.
GMA said it expects growth to mainly come from U.S. jurisdictions that are currently assessing candidates for new casino licences.
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