An independent study has suggested that every year 86,000 Canadian adults living in Quebec wager online an average of $9,903 each, granting online gambling sites in Canada revenue of roughly $850 million.
Interestingly, the median annual online betting – the point where half of online betters gamble more and the other half less – is only $856, significantly less than the average online betting. Apparently, the numbers are being skewed by a small number of internet high-rollers spending significant amounts on internet gambling.
The researchers discovered that seven out of ten adults in Quebec engage in some form of gambling, on average wagering $713 per year. Again, this number is distorted by high rollers as the median is only $132. A marginally lower median of just $128 has been discovered for Quebecers who bet offline but have thus far abstained from internet betting.
The study goes on to suggest that most of these gamblers are males below 44 years old and a noteworthy affinity for marijuana. 32.9 percent of Quebec’s gamblers also self-identified as pot smokers. By contrast, only 11.3 percent of Quebec’s non-gamblers confessed to regular marijuana use.
Almost twice as many internet gamblers, 60.5 percent, indulge in online poker in Canada. Internet sports betting in Canada is the second most popular at just 14.7 percent.
In an attempt to obtain some of this wealth, Loto-Quebec is starting their own line of online gambling services, due to launch before Christmas. Under Canadian gambling laws, which allow each province to create their own gambling regulations, Loto-Quebec has a legal monopoly over all wagering in the province. They hope to compete against an immense assortment of unregulated and offshore gambling sites.
This report was conducted in summer of 2009, by telephone interviewing nearly 12,000 Quebecers for 12 minutes each. It is part of a larger study which will cost half a million dollars and conclude in 2014.