Who Plays the Numbers Games in the Middle of the Day



Date of this version


Document Type



Lotteries, tax incidence


We analyse the increase in sales of Pick 3 and Pick 4 daily numbers lottery games and other Ohio Lottery games after Ohio introduced midday drawings for the Pick 3 and Pick 4 games in August 1999. The midday drawings increased Pick 3 sales by 5%, Pick 4 sales by 12%, and total lottery sales by 2% based on our analysis of a 36-month panel dataset of Ohio lottery sales by zip code. Midday drawings raise more revenue from the strongly regressive daily numbers games. However, the introduction of midday drawings does not change the negative income elasticities of demand for numbers games in an economically meaningful manner.

Published in

Applied Economics

Citation/Other Information

To cite this Article Combs, Kathryn L. and Spry, John A. (2011) 'Who plays the numbers games in the middle of the day?', Applied Economics, First published on: 06 February 2011 (iFirst) To link to this Article: DOI: 10.1080/00036846.2010.524634 URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00036846.2010.524634