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Gambling at Lucky Stores: Empirical Evidence from State Lottery Sales

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  • Jonathan Guryan
  • Melissa S. Kearney

Abstract

We show that the week after selling a large-prize Texas Lotto winning ticket, a retailer experiences a 12 to 38 percent relative increase in ticket sales. Some increase persists for up to 40 weeks. We document that the sales response increases with jackpot size and is larger in areas with more economically disadvantaged populations. Sales patterns across games and across retailers are not consistent with most advertising explanations. Furthermore, response patterns are not consistent with representativeness-based explanations for the hot hand or gambler's fallacy; we suggest an alternative explanation for the observed "lucky store" effect. (JEL H27, H71)

Suggested Citation

  • Jonathan Guryan & Melissa S. Kearney, 2008. "Gambling at Lucky Stores: Empirical Evidence from State Lottery Sales," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 458-473, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:98:y:2008:i:1:p:458-73 Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.98.1.458
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H27 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Other Sources of Revenue
    • H71 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue

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