American States’ coffers hit by slide in lottery sales

| 07/01/2011

(Bloomberg): Even the lure of multimillion-dollar jackpots hasn’t been a sure bet for cash-strapped U.S. states to keep lottery revenue on the rise. Income from lottery-ticket sales in fiscal year 2009 fell to $52.3 billion, a 0.9 percent drop from the previous year, according to data released by the Census Burea. It was the first decline since 1998 and cut profits by $511 million from a year earlier to $17.7 billion, leaving states with less cash to balance budgets and aid cities and towns. “There was a myth out there that lotteries are recession- proof,” said Gordon Medenica, director of the New York state lottery, the largest in the U.S. “They’re really similar to any other entertainment industry. When times are bad we feel it as well in our results,” he added.

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