The global COVID-19 economic crisis will not stop at online poker in the long term
The COVID-19 pandemic is still present, and the second wave has now reached almost every country in the world. Different countries have already shut down their affected cities again, almost completely. Things will not be as bad as they were in March/April this year, as global health systems can now deal with the pandemic. Many countries have enforced strict measures to contain the virus, but these measures have somehow caused a fall in their economy.
After the crash in the spring of this year, everyone hoped that things would gradually return to normal. Sure, certain things have improved in the meantime, but there is still no trace of normality yet. Numerous companies are currently facing bankruptcy, countless employees have already been laid off, and politicians are shooting billions into various rescue packages to limit the damage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. There are no doubts that it will take some time before global economies recover.
For now, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on online poker is actually very positive. Many people are now spending more time on the Internet at home, and they hope to win some money by playing poker games. Another factor is that every live tournament series are currently played online. But this phase will not last forever. The positive thing is that most people are still calm and trust their country to make sure things go well. The EU alone has provided a corona rescue package worth 750 billion to support economies in Europe. In the EU countries, the outlook is certainly a lot more positive than in other countries that do not have such opportunities.
The forecast for the next 1-2 years
Nobody knows what will happen in the next few years, but we can assume the following scenarios realistically. Live events will be played usually again next year, provided life returns to normal, and there is a vaccine available. The bigger problem is the liquidity of the player pool. Professional players always have enough money to play, but the decisive factor is the casual gamers who occasionally want to gamble a bit and have fun. These are the players who pour money into the system – these are players the market needs.
If the global economic situation does not improve soon, it will also have an extreme effect on online poker. Of course, there will always be people who will play, regardless of whether they can afford it financially or not. But some people will hold their money to themselves instead of using it to gamble; this is precisely the problem. The poker market also needs players from all over the world who are willing to deposit money and risk a lot. The decisive factor here will be how politicians in individual countries behave, how money from rescue packages is used, and whether the global economy can come back to normal quickly.
What also has a very negative impact on the international online poker market is the new gambling contract in Germany. The new law stipulates that players can now only deposit a maximum of €1,000 per month, and it only applies to offers on the Internet. Everyone can happily gamble away €100,000 a day at the stately casino, the lottery kiosk, the slot machine, horse racing track, and so on if they want. Yes, there is no trace of fairness or logic, but that is another topic. The problem is that Germany is one of the economically strongest countries in the world, and people in this country have a lot more financial opportunities than those in other countries. If the new gambling contract actually stays that way, it is another major disadvantage and will harm online poker.
As already mentioned, this is only a forecast, as everything might turn out very differently. But if you look at the world’s current situation, it must be clear to everyone that we need a change quickly so that everything can be as smooth as it was once before.