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Gambling firms’ shares slide following credit card ban

City AM logo City AM 14/01/2020 Anna Menin
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Shares in several major gambling companies have fallen this morning after the industry watchdog announced it would ban betting using credit card deposits. 

The ban, which comes into effect from April, covers all online and offline betting, with the exception of “non-remote” lotteries including the National Lottery.

William Hill shares fell as much as 4.5 per cent in morning trading, while Flutter Entertainment  — which owns Paddy Power and Betfair — dropped 3.54 per cent. 

Shares in 888 Holdings slid 3.54 per cent following news of the ban and the departure of the company’s chief financial officer, which was also announced this morning.

Gambling Commission chief executive Neil MacArthur said the new ban “should minimise the risks of harm to consumers from gambling with money they do not have”.

MacArthur said that research indicated that 22 per cent of online gamblers who use credit cards are problem gamblers, with more “suffering some form of gambling harm”.

Video: UK sees 'huge levels of growth' in gambling addiction (SKy News)

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The ban will be reviewed by the commission after it comes into effect on 14 April. 

“We realise that this change will inconvenience those consumers who use credit cards responsibly but we are satisfied that reducing the risk of harm to other consumers means that action must be taken,” said MacArthur.

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