Speaking to Yahoo Finance, Warren Buffett the world’s most powerful hedge fund magnate with a speculated wealth of $76 billion remains tepid on the potential of legalising US sports betting.
Buffett a fan of college basketball, who this February repeated his $1 million-a-year sweepstake for Berkshire Hathaway employees to predict the correct ‘March Madness’ brackets of the NCAA Basketball Championships, told Yahoo that he would ‘probably bet against’ sports betting being legalised.
Buffet, known as the ‘Oracle of Omaha’ detailed that the rise of US fantasy sports operators such as DraftKings and FanDuel, had added traction for the legalisation of betting, and further acknowledges that US pro leagues had a right to review their stance on the matter.
Nevertheless, Buffett stated that his stance against legalised betting was driven by social and wider community concerns.”If you don’t have a team in a game, it is definitely more fun to have five bucks on it with the guy sitting next to you, there’s no question about that,” Buffett told Yahoo.
“But I generally don’t think there’s a lot to gain by having a country where lots of people are going to be losers. If they’re making a bet with the guy next to them, that’s one thing, but if they’re doing it against a sportsbook, they’re going to lose money all the time. And gambling is addictive, so I’m negative on it.”
Buffett’s comments are made, as the American Gaming Association (AGA) urges the Trump administration for a review the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) which has outlawed sports betting in the majority of US states.
AGA leadership claims that PASPA provisions which have limited legal sports betting to just four states (Nevada, Oregon, Delaware and Montana) has criminalised the American consumer creating a $150 billion a year underground market.