Ticket sales for the Arkansas Lottery rose in the later part of April, after Arkansans began receiving economic stimulus checks, according to documents Family Council obtained via the Freedom of Information Act.
Family Council recently sent the Arkansas Lottery Office a Freedom of Information Act request asking for weekly ticket sales information from March 29 to April 25.
The reports show that from March 29 to April 4, Arkansas Lottery instant ticket net sales were about $9 million.
During the week of April 5 to April 11, instant ticket net sales dropped to $8.9 million.
From April 12 to April 18, net sales for instant lottery tickets rose to more than $9.8 million.
And during the week of April 19 to April 25, net sales for instant lottery tickets surpassed $11 million.
Across the board, Arkansas lottery ticket sales jumped during the week of April 19 – April 25, compared to previous weeks.
It’s impossible to know how many lottery tickets were bought using COVID-19 stimulus money the federal government sent to Arkansans, but it seems like more than just a coincidence that lottery ticket sales would jump after these checks began arriving.
News outlets have similarly reported that in Texas state lottery ticket sales saw a boost after stimulus checks were deposited.
It’s no secret that gambling preys on the poor and desperate, and state-run lotteries like Arkansas’ are no exception.
That’s why groups like Stop Predatory Gambling have called on state officials to suspend their state-run lotteries temporarily as taxpayers receive relief checks.
Otherwise money that is meant to help taxpayers make ends meet during these challenging times could end up being wasted on losing lottery tickets.