According to the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) there has been a significant upswing in the number of UK punters who are engaged in betting activities since live sports has begun to return following the easing of the Covid-19 restrictions.
Publishing updated figures on Monday, the UKGC showed that the month of June had revealed a significant uptick in betting activity on real events. According to the UKGC, this data is evidence of what it describes as the ‘pent-up’ demand for live sports, and in particular, for football betting.
The data gathered by the regulator, which covers around 80% of the UK betting industry, has shown that gross gambling yield (GGY) taken through real event wagering rose by 115% between the months of May and June. The regulator also noted that gambling yield for June was significantly higher than the average levels recorded before the lockdown.
The figures also showed that the total number of bets placed on real sports events also increased during June. Thes rose from 104,043,293 bets in May to 255,476,612 in June, representing an increase of 146%. At the same time, the number of active players also rose by 81%.
According to the UKGC, this data reflects a number of developments in June, which included the high frequency of televised fixtures following the relaunch of the Premier League, combined with favourable match timings and the availability of some live free-to-air coverage.
At the same time, however, virtual betting markets seem to have declined. Gambling yield on virtual events, which had seen growth during the lockdown, fell by 15% between May and June, with a figure of £9.6 million for June, compared with £11.3 million in the prior month. The number of active players on virtual sports betting also fell, by 155 to 244,219.
Overall, there appears to be some shrinking in the size of the UK gambling industry, as the number of betting accounts has fallen by 5%. This has been matched by a decline in the average length of betting sessions, which fell from 22 to 21 minutes from May to June. And while the figures for engagement in more than one form of betting activity remain relatively high, there was a drop from a level of 41% in April down to 35% in June.