LONDON (Bywire News) - As the worsening cost of living in Britain continues, many different people have looked to gambling and investing in crypto as a way to bridge the gap between their income and outgoings. Many will be risking their financial futures.
GamCare, a national gambling helpline stated that they had received calls from individuals receiving state welfare making the conscious decision to gamble in the hope of countering the soaring energy and bills evidently, they lost their welfare payments.
The charity added that people whom they had previously helped had since relapsed back into gambling amid the growing financial constraints.
Out of the Group of Seven advanced economies, British households have faced the highest rate of inflation, hitting a 40-year high of 9.1% in May with the Bank of England warning that inflation could hit well over 11% by October.
A YouGov survey conducted commissioned by GamCare of more than 4,000 people and published on Thursday revealed that 46% of people were worried about the state of their finances.
More than half of those people claimed to have gambled over the past 12 months with most of them losing money.
"Our helpline advisers are hearing that the cost of living is impacting people's gambling behaviours – particularly those gamblers who have recovered," said the chief executive of GamCare, Anna Hemmings.
"We also know that our team are hearing from more and more people who are reaching out for help around crypto trading."
Cryptocurrency has often been seen as a way to hedge against inflation. However, the last six months have seen the sector fall back from historic highs. Anyone who invested in bitcoin six months ago to protect against inflation will have lost more than half of their money.
GamCare claimed 43% of problem gamblers had invested in crypto with 25% admitting they wanted to invest to chase more losses compared with only 7% of wider crypto investors.
(Writing Samba Jallow, editing by Tom Cropper and by Klaudia Fior)