This week it was revealed that punters in the Australian state of Victoria spent $43 million more on pokies in the past year when compared to the year before.
The pokie machines in Victoria saw $2.6 billion in revenues, and the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation revealed that some of the most poor areas in the state saw the most gambled there. The rise in spending is being attributed to more machines being introduced to pubs and other social areas, where inhibitions are generally lower.
Commenting on the increase Dr. Charles Livingstone of Monash University said, "In Victoria, both the Liberal and Labor parties have introduced harm minimisation policies, which have had good effect, have seen a reduction in the losses, and they've capped machine numbers and so on. And all of those have been good. Unfortunately the operators have now worked out how to start increasing the revenue again."
There have been various measures introduced by lawmakers to increase regulations of the machines, although this has been met with limited success.