The Louisiana Lottery has just completed one of their best years ever. I know that seems very counterintuitive with the coronavirus pandemic going on but it's true. The Lottery is reporting its second-best fiscal year ever. That fiscal year ended on June 30th and Lottery officials are giving most of the credit to scratch-off games.

While the big money multi-state games like Powerball and Mega Millions usually garner a lot of attention. The fact that scratch-off games were available at stores that were allowed to stay open during Louisiana's lockdown is the likely reason that sales of the games and the profit from those games showed an increase.

Ticket sales for Powerball and Mega Millions were down by about $66 million over the fiscal year. The main reason was neither of those games had any crazy stupid jackpots that drive non-traditional players to take a chance. In fact, neither multi-state game had a jackpot reach in excess of $400 million during the last 12 months.

Meanwhile, the lower-priced scratch-off games featuring instant gratification have been selling well during these pandemic times. The speculation is that people still want the thrill of playing a game and taking a chance to win but with so many casinos and video poker places closed because of coronavirus, scratch-offs became the only option.

Needless to say the good revenue news for the lottery is in a roundabout way good news for Louisiana's school children as proceeds from the state's lottery are designated to help fund educational programs throughout the state. At least while we're gambling, we aren't necessarily gambling on our future. Which is kind of a good thing.


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