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Prohibition of gambling on credit cards

This report focuses on research conducted around the prohibition of gambling on credit cards

Conclusions and next steps​

Having monitored the metrics identified in the Theory of Change model since the prohibition on gambling with credit cards was introduced in April 2020, no evidence has been identified so far that would support a requirement for significant remedial action.

The ban has been successfully introduced and identified changes in financial and gambling behaviours for those who previously gambled using credit cards have, on the whole, been positive.

The majority of those who have changed their behaviours have reduced their reliance on borrowed money to gamble, the inconvenience to leisure gamblers has been minimised and there is support amongst gamblers with a range of gambling intensity for the introduction of the credit card ban.

However, it is also clear that the awareness of legal workarounds is reasonably high and those that are sufficiently motivated to gamble with borrowed money are likely to find a way to do so, albeit whilst experiencing greater friction. Ongoing monitoring of behaviours is important in case the end of lockdown restrictions brings about an increase in more harmful forms of funding gambling activity.

NatCen have been commissioned to complete a full evaluation of the impact of the credit card ban by Greo. The evaluation contract began in June 2021 with fieldwork for qualitative and quantitative data currently underway and is scheduled to conclude at the end of February 2023.

The metrics that will be considered as part of the full evaluation are longer-reaching and complex than those considered in this monitoring phase; they will require additional sources of information and co-operation of multiple stakeholders.

In particular, support from the financial industry would assist the completion of the evaluation. Certain identified metrics can only be informed by data held by financial services bodies and the co-operation of one or more financial bodies representative of GB consumers would assist in evaluating the impact of the prohibition of gambling on credit cards.

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Prohibition of gambling on credit cards - Inconvenience to leisure gamblers​
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Prohibition of gambling on credit cards - Appendices​
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