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Howard Center for Investigative Journalism

  • Lottery retailers in nearly every state are clustered in lower-income neighborhoods, driving a wealth transfer from less affluent and educated Americans to the multinational corporations that are increasingly managing the day-to-day operations of the state-sanctioned gambling games. A new investigation from the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at the University of Maryland found that, in almost every state, lottery retailers are concentrated in lower-income neighborhoods that are disproportionately Black and Hispanic. The investigation also used, for the first time, mobile phone data to show that lottery retail store customers are mostly local. The center also found few checks on aggressive advertising and marketing of the games.