Where Illinois Sits on the Most vs. Least Gambling-Addicted States List
Gambling addiction, or "Gambling disorder," affects slightly more than 2% of the U.S. adult population, but the price tag for society is quite a bit higher, according to a study by the National Council on Problem Gambling. We're talking costs around the $6 billion mark. So, how much of that money is coming from Illinois?
Before we get to the Illinois numbers, consider this: the average debt accumulated by a male gambling addict in the U.S. is between $55,000-$90,000, while for a female gambling addict it's around $15,000. The common thread between men and women is that neither group has much luck in paying back what they owe in gambling debts, which leads to more and more problems.
Personal finance site WalletHub ran the numbers on gambling addiction by state, and here's how they went about it:
The gambling problem, however, is much bigger in some states than in others. WalletHub’s analysts therefore compared the 50 states to determine where excessive gambling is most prevalent. Our data set of 15 key metrics ranges from presence of illegal gambling operations to lottery sales per capita to share of adults with gambling disorders.
First, the top 5 most gambling-addicted states:
2) South Dakota
4) West Virginia
And the top 5 least gambling-addicted states:
As for Illinois, we sit in 18th place, just behind New Mexico, and just ahead of New York.
A breakdown of Illinois' numbers:
Gambling Addiction in Illinois (1=Most Addicted, 25=Avg.):
35th – Casinos per Capita
25th – Gaming Machines per Capita
21st – Lottery Sales per Capita
11th – % of Adults with Gambling Disorders
1st – Gambling-Related Arrests per Capita
36th – Legality of Daily Fantasy Sports
5th – Legality of Sports Gambling