New Zealand Racing, wagering

Gambling expenditure in the 2020/2021 fiscal year hit a five-year high in New Zealand, with growth led by spending on pokies.

According to figures released by the Department of Internal Affairs, spending on all forms of gambling hit NZ$2.62 billion ($1.8 billion), up almost 17 percent from the prior year.

Spending on gaming machines in the nation’s pubs and clubs jumped to 987 million, from $802 million a year earlier, making a gain of 23 percent. It was the largest increase out of all four gambling types.

Money spent in casinos rose almost 11 percent to $559 million, while the lotteries commission reported revenue of $694 million, up from $631 million.

The NZ Racing Board saw revenue gain to $385 million from $315 million.