Lotto nothing? The budgetary impact of state lotteries
Lottery revenues are often touted as an independent revenue source for states. Using 32 years of state financial data, the fallacy of such thinking is demonstrated. Being the first to control for the self-selection of being a lottery state, it is found that overall tax revenues decline with increased lottery sales. Moreover, it is discovered that this decline is driven by a decrease in revenues from general sales and excise taxes, which is only partially offset by increases in income tax receipts. Such findings are attributed to a combination of behavioural and political responses following the lottery's implementation.