Lottery marketing to the poor is not a viable strategy from a political or business standpoint. Most people purchase lottery tickets outside the neighborhoods in which they live. However, high-income workers and shoppers also pass through low-income neighborhoods. As a result, these areas have very few lottery outlets and stores.
Statistical analysis of U.S. state lotteries
In the United States, state lotteries have become the most popular form of gambling. In a survey, over half of respondents said they bought at least one lottery ticket in the last year. However, some argue that these lotteries prey on the poor and disenfranchised.
One study examined lottery sales in 44 states and Washington, D.C. It found that households in the lowest-income third of the population spent the most money on state lotteries. A similar study on Georgia’s lottery found that low-income households spent more than white households, but got much lower lottery benefits.
Per capita spending by poor people
North Carolina counties with the highest rates of poverty spend the most money on lottery tickets. According to an analysis by N.C. Policy Watch, residents spent an average of $212 on lottery tickets per person in 2011. The analysis combines lottery sales data and estimates of poverty in each county to see where the most lottery dollars were spent.
The study uses data from the U.S. Census Bureau and GreatData, which is licensed to LendEDU. It is a data service that uses historical trends to predict future trends. This data was then used to calculate median household incomes in each state. The resulting median household income is then used to estimate lottery spending per capita in each state.
Impact on education
Despite the public perception that lottery proceeds hurt education, lottery officials argue that the lottery does not negatively impact education. In fact, lottery advertising claims that money raised by lottery tickets goes to public schools. As a result, education spending has increased in states that have lotteries. However, there are some negative side effects of lottery funding for schools.
One of these side effects is the reduction of need-based financial aid. State lawmakers should take this into account before enacting lottery-funded higher-education policies.