If you are one who thinks gambling is a new activity that blossomed in Las Vegas in the 20th century, you may need to brush up on your gambling facts. To get a good idea of how large the gambling story is, try going back a couple of thousand years. You’ll see that games based on chance and the roll of dice have been always been a part of human history.
Not only did the Chinese and other populations enjoy gambling and games of chance, many Native American groups engaged in such activities long before the modern casino. Add to this the varieties of gambling carried around the world by European explorers and you have a global phenomenon of challenge and excitement. Here’s a starter fact – lotteries have even been used to raise funds for public construction projects.
o If you see 100 people on the street in a day, it’s a pretty safe bet that about 65 of them have placed a bet or made a wager in the past year.
o By many counts, profits in gambling casinos worldwide amount to $30 billion annually. Various studies report that Native American reservations host nearly 300 casinos.
History of gambling facts: The state of Nevada legalized gambling in 1931. New Jersey was the second state to make gambling legal (1976). South Dakota and Iowa followed in 1989.
o While casinos have operated in Nevada since the 1940s, the state created its Gaming Commission in 1959.
One myth that seems reluctant to die is that online gambling is not fair to players, because of casino control, less-than-random numbers and so on. Essentially, this is false. Safe-gaming software, eCommerce Online Regulation and Assurance (eCOGRA) and various licensing countries have eliminated much of the insecurity and unfair play. The myth may soon turn into one of the many Internet gambling facts.
o Casino style games are by far the most popular activity online, outnumbering sports betting 2 to 1. Lotteries and pari-mutuel betting are far down the list in percentage of online gambling activity, as are real-time online poker rooms.
o The Interstate Wire Act, passed in 1961, is a federal law that had the goal of reducing gambling activity. The law states that it is illegal in the United States to use wire communication (such as telephone) to place bets or share gambling information.
Interesting Gambling Facts: Sixty percent of online gamblers use English as their primary language. Second in line is Russian. Germany takes up position number three, according to a survey by Inland Entertainment Corporation. As for age, the numbers are close, but those between 26 and 34 play a bit more than others. One out of every five players is over the age of 45.
o In addition to online casinos, some of the most popular varieties of Web/Internet gambling are lotteries, sports books (wager on football, rugby, baseball etc.).
o According to a 2007 story in USA Today, the Venetian Macao casino was the largest in the world (on the southern tip of China). Foxwoods in Connecticut is also advertised as the world’s largest casino.
Very Interesting Gambling Facts: Video slots are generally considered the most popular online casino game. Roulette is one of the hardest games to win, while casino poker is often considered one of the easiest (with a little skill). If you can learn to count cards, you can move blackjack to the top of the “easier” list.
o There are 24 possible number combinations when a pair of dice is rolled.
o In 2003, a man won more than $39 million in a slot payout, after putting about $100 in. In 1997, a woman won $12 million in one payout.
Even More Interesting Gambling Facts: Gambling is technically legal in nearly every state, in some form. Other than the Wire Act mentioned earlier, there is little federal regulation pertaining to gambling by an individual.
Do some of your own research on gambling facts. Learn more about gambling history and surprise your friends with your knowledge of gambling statistics. It’s challenging and fun!
Jim Hale is a veteran writer with more than 30 years experience in the newspaper and magazine industry. He has produced hundreds of articles for Web clients and produces Web-page content on