viewWilliam Hill PLC

William Hill, GVC, Paddy Power Betfair shares tank on call for mandatory tax to combat gambling addiction

The report, published in the British Medical Journal, said gambling laws should be radically overhauled

William hill
The cost of problem gambling has been “significantly underestimated”, a report claims

Shares in William Hill PLC (LON:WMH), GVC Holdings PLC (LON:GVC) and Paddy Power Betfair plc (LON:PPB) were under the cosh after a report suggested the industry should pay a mandatory tax to fund the treatment of gambling addiction.

The report, published in the British Medical Journal, said gambling laws should be radically overhauled as the economic cost of problem gambling had been “significantly underestimated”.

The paper said new laws should put more responsibility on the industry to combat gambling-related harm.

In reaction, shares in William Hill fell 4.7% to 142p, GVC dropped 3.7% 6to 594p and Paddy Power Betfair declined 2.3% to 6,056p.

In the UK, there are an estimated 430,000 problem gamblers.

The BMJ paper said there is a lack of funding to address the issue. Some £1.5mln was spent in the UK last year on the prevention of gambling addiction, or about 2p per capita.

There is just one specialist NHS clinic for problem gambling but the government has vowed to provide more as part of a funding package for the health service.

Professor Gerda Reith, a co-author from the University of Glasgow, said: “Gambling doesn’t just affect an individual. The impacts ripple out beyond them to their family, friends, communities and society.”

A downbeat broker note from Goldman Sachs was also weighing on the sector.

"We cut our target multiples for gambling stocks by c.15%, believing the industry has entered a new reality where multiples will be fundamentally lower, amid persisting regulatory uncertainty and maturing levels of growth," Goldman said. 

Quick facts: William Hill PLC

Price: 172 GBX

Market: LSE
Market Cap: £1.5 billion

Add related topics to MyProactive

Create your account: sign up and get ahead on news and events


The Company is a publisher. You understand and agree that no content published on the Site constitutes a recommendation that any particular security, portfolio of securities, transaction, or investment strategy is...



Full interview: Symphony Environmental Technologies has game changing...

Symphony Environmental Technologies PLC (AIM: SYM) CEO Michael Laurier joined Steve Darling from Proactive with news the company has received U.S. Food & Drugs Administration approval or its d2p antimicrobial technology. Laurier discusses what that means for the company and what their...

4 hours, 43 minutes ago

2 min read