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N.M. Lottery posts second-best year

New Mexico LotteryNew Mexico Lottery: N.M. Lottery posts second-best year

New Mexico legislators were told today that strong sales of in-state games helped drive the New Mexico Lottery to its second-best year of sales.

Lottery Authority CEO Tom Shaheen said that sales of all games exceeded $139 million, while net revenues (profits) earmarked for the Lottery Success Scholarship program were $32.2 million, topping $30 million for the third straight year.

All financial data for fiscal year 2005 are preliminary and unaudited.

Shaheen, appearing before the Legislature's interim Lottery Tuition Scholarship Study Subcommittee in Santa Fe, said that gross sales for the 2005 fiscal year ending June 30 were $139.2 million [see chart below].

Four New Mexico-specific lottery products — instant tickets (Scratchers), Roadrunner Cash, 4 This Way! and Pick 3 — combined to set records. Powerball, the traditional lotto game sold here and 28 other U.S. lotteries, had a sales slump in most states, including New Mexico.

"The majority of Powerball jackpots won during the fiscal year were well under $100 million," said Shaheen. "Even though the starting jackpot of $10 million is a lot of money for most people, the fact is that many players don't buy Powerball tickets until jackpots reach the $100 million mark."

Instant ticket sales surpassed $90 million in one year for the first time. In-state online game Roadrunner Cash exceeded $9 million, an all-time high for this eight-year-old game. Newly introduced 4 This Way! combined with Pick 3 to exceed last year's Pick 3 sales by 41 percent for a total of just under $3 million.

Shaheen told legislators that lottery sales remain strong, and the monthly transfers of net revenues to the State's Lottery Tuition Fund, which supports the Lottery Success Scholarship, are also healthy. Lottery profits averaged almost $2.7 million each month during the fiscal year. Currently, the Lottery Success Scholarship covers 100 percent of in-state tuition at 25 New Mexico public college campuses.

Despite the Powerball setback, Shaheen said that New Mexicans are still playing the lottery and winning. A record $400,000 Roadrunner Cash top prize, the launch of New Mexico's first Scratcher with a $500,000 top prize and the launch of a new nightly game with a $4,000 top prize were among the reasons.

"Even after Powerball sales dipped, New Mexico Lottery players still won more than $76.2 million in prizes during the fiscal year," Shaheen added. That included:

  • Scratcher $1,000 - $125,000 top prizes: 750
  • Pick 3 $500 top prizes: 832
  • 4 This Way! $4,000 top prizes: 93
  • Powerball $5,000 - $25,000 third prizes: 72
  • Powerball $100,000 - $500,000 second prizes: 15
  • Roadrunner Cash $20,000 - $400,000 top prizes: 33

In April, the 29 lotteries that operate Powerball announced game changes, which Shaheen said should increase prizes, sales and Lottery Success Scholarship profits.

The starting jackpot will increase to $15 million from the current $10 million, and will increase by no less than $5 million for each drawing. The annuity option will also be changed so that players will receive an annual payment that increases each year. Players can still elect to receive the jackpot as a lump-sum cash payment.

Fifteen New Mexico Lottery players have won the multi-million dollar Powerball jackpot: 14 in an office pool and another as an individual.

The New Mexico Lottery has already raised almost $250 million for public education, including more than $182 million for the Lottery Success Scholarship program. Well over 35,000 students so far have received their in-state college tuition paid by the Lottery Success Scholarship, with an updated student count pending.

Historical Information

The following is a history of New Mexico Lottery gross sales and net revenues (profits) since inception.

Each full year has set a sales record. Fiscal year 1996 sales were only about nine weeks long; all other fiscal years run July 1 - June 30.

Of the total amount of money transferred for New Mexico education, almost $66.6 million was used for school construction and repairs from fiscal 1996 through fiscal 2001.

All annualized figures below are rounded.

 Fiscal Year Sales Public Education
 1996† $28.5 Million $6.3 Million
 1997 $82.2 Million $21.9 Million
 1998 $84.9 Million $20.1 Million
 1999 $89.2 Million $19.6 Million
 2000 $110.6 Million $24.5 Million
 2001 $115.6 Million $25.9 Million
 2002 $133.9 Million $29.6 Million
 2003 $137.0 Million $33.1 Million
 2004 $148.7 Million $35.9 Million
 2005‡ $139.2 Million $32.2 Million
 Totals $1.07 Billion $249.2 Million


† represents partial fiscal year, April 27 - June 30, 1996
‡ FY '05 data are preliminary and unaudited

  • Lottery Success Scholarship/Lottery Tuition Fund: $182,649,502 (1996 to present)
  • Public School Capital Outlay Fund: $66,553,850 (1996 to 2001)
  • Raised for public education through FY '05: $249,203,352

Press Release

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15 comments. Last comment 11 years ago by CASH Only.
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United States
Member #1826
July 11, 2003
2645 Posts
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Posted: July 28, 2005, 5:20 pm - IP Logged

Once the players find out that they're not drawn with balls anymore, they'll start seeing a drop in sales.

(insert signature here)

    LOTTOMIKE's avatar - cash money.jpg
    Tennessee
    United States
    Member #7853
    October 15, 2004
    11338 Posts
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    Posted: July 28, 2005, 5:35 pm - IP Logged

    when did new mexico stop having balls,must be within the last year.....

      Avatar
      Louisville, KY
      United States
      Member #15734
      May 20, 2005
      203 Posts
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      Posted: July 28, 2005, 7:41 pm - IP Logged

      when did new mexico stop having balls,must be within the last year.....

      According to their website, you are right Mike... 9/26/2004, when they launched 4-This-Way

        Avatar
        New Member
        Albuquerque, NM
        United States
        Member #1926
        July 28, 2003
        6 Posts
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        Posted: July 28, 2005, 8:07 pm - IP Logged

        The NM Lottery was open and up-front about the change.  We had news releases (seen here on Lottery Post and mainstream media in New Mexico), news conferences and demonstrations.  Drawings are still open to the public, as always.  "Once the players find out......" was some time ago.  Sales for the affected games have gone up, not down.

        Lance Ross

        Corporate Communcations Manager

        NM Lottery Authority

         

          Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
          Chief Bottle Washer
          New Jersey
          United States
          Member #1
          May 31, 2000
          23260 Posts
          Online
          Posted: July 28, 2005, 8:28 pm - IP Logged

          Lance,

          I think the feeling in general is that when people become educated as to the drawing mechanisms, we have found that the majority of those people dislike computerized drawings.

          Out of the millions of people who play the lottery, a certain percentage -- I'd guess that it's probably the majority -- is not motivated to become more educated on the lottery itself, as it is merely a form of entertainment to them.

          If you were to take an average citizen -- not someone educated as to the different options available to them -- and ask them if they would prefer to have a computer select the numbers or have the numbers drawn from a lottery ball machine, I think their reaction would be, "Huh? Of course I'd want a lottery ball machine!"

          I commend the NM Lottery for their sales efforts, particularly the introduction of 4 This Way! (which is one of my personal favorite games, in terms of its game structure - not its drawing method. Wink)

          However, I don't think you could really make an honest assessment that the addition of computerized drawings has added revenue, because it looks to me that the NM Lottery has increased sales steadily prior to computerized drawings.  You guys do a great job at running a tight ship with good marketing, which I believe accounts for your steady increases.

          The drawing mechanism is one area I would have never touched -- like the golden goose.

          Personally I truly believe that one of the ways to generate the biggest bump in revenues would be to revert to ball drawings, and make a major event of it.

          Regardless of our differences on this issue, the NM Lottery is a well-run organization, and you're a stand-up guy for posting your opinion.  It's always a pleasure to post the goings-on at the NM Lottery.

           

          Check the State Lottery Report Card
          What grade did your lottery earn?

           

          Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
          Help eliminate computerized drawings!

            Avatar

            United States
            Member #1826
            July 11, 2003
            2645 Posts
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            Posted: July 28, 2005, 8:34 pm - IP Logged

            Remember New Coke? You might not be emulating the sales of New Coke with computers, but you could surely duplicate the performance of the return of Coke classic by bringing back the balls.

            (insert signature here)

              Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
              Chief Bottle Washer
              New Jersey
              United States
              Member #1
              May 31, 2000
              23260 Posts
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              Posted: July 28, 2005, 8:38 pm - IP Logged

              Yup, good analogy JS9.  I remember that episode with Classic Coke well, and most of all I remember that Coke took a negative situation and turned it upside-down to make one of the biggest success stories in history.

              I can't wait for the day that one of the computerized states reverts back to real drawings.  It will start a flood of states reverting, IMHO.

               

              Check the State Lottery Report Card
              What grade did your lottery earn?

               

              Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
              Help eliminate computerized drawings!

                Avatar
                Louisville, KY
                United States
                Member #15734
                May 20, 2005
                203 Posts
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                Posted: July 29, 2005, 5:15 am - IP Logged

                The NM Lottery was open and up-front about the change.  We had news releases (seen here on Lottery Post and mainstream media in New Mexico), news conferences and demonstrations.  Drawings are still open to the public, as always.  "Once the players find out......" was some time ago.  Sales for the affected games have gone up, not down.

                Lance Ross

                Corporate Communcations Manager

                NM Lottery Authority

                 

                Mr. Ross has a good argument for computers, but numbers don't lie. The sales figures prove themselves....

                2004: $148.7 Million 
                2005: $139.2 Million 


                There was a $9.5 MILLION DROP in sales compared to 2004. The players apparently HAVE found out about computers instead of balls, and the results are proving that.

                Come on, New Mexico! Don't make silly arguments for computers when you had great sales BEFORE the computers came in. You have started an irreversible trend, unless, of course, you revert to drawing machines.

                  Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
                  Chief Bottle Washer
                  New Jersey
                  United States
                  Member #1
                  May 31, 2000
                  23260 Posts
                  Online
                  Posted: July 29, 2005, 6:03 am - IP Logged

                  The NM Lottery was open and up-front about the change.  We had news releases (seen here on Lottery Post and mainstream media in New Mexico), news conferences and demonstrations.  Drawings are still open to the public, as always.  "Once the players find out......" was some time ago.  Sales for the affected games have gone up, not down.

                  Lance Ross

                  Corporate Communcations Manager

                  NM Lottery Authority

                   

                  Mr. Ross has a good argument for computers, but numbers don't lie. The sales figures prove themselves....

                  2004: $148.7 Million 
                  2005: $139.2 Million 


                  There was a $9.5 MILLION DROP in sales compared to 2004. The players apparently HAVE found out about computers instead of balls, and the results are proving that.

                  Come on, New Mexico! Don't make silly arguments for computers when you had great sales BEFORE the computers came in. You have started an irreversible trend, unless, of course, you revert to drawing machines.

                  You make some good points, and I don't disagree with you.  Some of the drop is definitely the result of the sag in Powerball sales, although it's possible player discontent would be responsible for some of it as well.  We have seen this in other states too.

                   

                  Check the State Lottery Report Card
                  What grade did your lottery earn?

                   

                  Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
                  Help eliminate computerized drawings!

                    Avatar
                    New Mexico
                    United States
                    Member #12305
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                    Posted: July 29, 2005, 8:46 am - IP Logged

                    Interesting story.

                    As a NM Lottery player who talks with a lot of other NM Lottery players, I think there are some flaws in the analysis of why it's making less money, but it's still an interesting story.

                    NM Roadrunner isn't an inspiring game.  Ticket buyers aren't even aware, so far as I can tell, that it's computer drawn.  But the reason (I believe) more people don't buy RR tickets is the same reason they do buy scratchers.  Which is to say, they like to win the occasional small prizes, while hoping for larger ones.

                    It's also, I believe, the reason they're going to shift entirely away from Powerball after the matrix change.

                    New Mexicans fill a dozen casinos almost every day plugging money into slot machines.  When a casino 'gets smart' and tries to reduce the payouts on the lower end, people shift to other casinos.  For a year or more a billboard on I 40 between Laguna and Albuquerque advertised, "Route 66 Casino - The loosest slot machines in New Mexico". 

                    That billboard had people on the highway, truckers and tourists, and ABQ residents going in to find out about this new casino that was starting up in a forest of others.  They'd drive 20 miles out of ABQ to find out.  Not about the jackpots, nobody thinks any slot machine is going to turn loose more jackpots than anywhere else.  A loose slot machine pays off frequent, small wins.

                    That's something every lottery is going to have to find out the hard way.

                    In essence, Roadrunner is just a smaller Powerball with lousier prizes and equally few of them.  I can't imagine why anyone spends a dollar on a ticket.  If they want to sell them they ought to look at some of the pick 5s out there in other states that are doing well and try a 'monkey-see-monkey-do".

                    Jack

                      Avatar
                      New Mexico
                      United States
                      Member #12305
                      March 10, 2005
                      2984 Posts
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                      Posted: July 29, 2005, 9:11 am - IP Logged

                      The NM Lottery was open and up-front about the change.  We had news releases (seen here on Lottery Post and mainstream media in New Mexico), news conferences and demonstrations.  Drawings are still open to the public, as always.  "Once the players find out......" was some time ago.  Sales for the affected games have gone up, not down.

                      Lance Ross

                      Corporate Communcations Manager

                      NM Lottery Authority

                       

                      You guys down at the NM Lottery Authority would be doing yourselves a service to take a second look at the conventional wisdom that people don't buy PB tickets unless prizes are high.  My sense is that this simply ain't true.  The same individuals do buy when prizes are lower.  They simply buy more tickets when prizes are high. 

                      As for Roadrunner, I think you'd sell a lot more tickets if you'd make that sheet you put on the stands in the convenience stores look as though it doesn't take an idiot to buy a ticket. 

                      Make it clearly different from PB..... get away from the dollar and three dollar prizes and replace them with 1/10th as many $10 and $30 dollar prizes, along with a multiplier option.  Take a look at KS, WA, NY Lotto...... Those two-ticket  for a dollar options would make a big hit with NM lottery players.

                      We aren't noted for a lot of innovation and imagination here, as you well know.  But we have the advantage of being relatively small, with a surprisingly high percentage of gamblers of every sort.  You could, with a bit less assuming and a bit more looking around you, make NM Lottery the best in the nation, the one the others want to do the monkey-see-monkey-do on.

                      You'd also sell an awfully lot more tickets if you'd put some pressure on the tribes to make tickets available on the Rez.  Tribal members in a major part of this state buy tickets when they're in town, but they hit the casinos with their monthly bucks before they come to a place in the road where they could spend a buck on a lottery ticket.  There are some other avenues you could take to interest the tribes, as well, without detracting from sales to the other players.  If you'd pause to ask yourself what's different about NA gambling tendencies, as opposed to Anglo-Hispanic ones, you could be selling a lot of tickets to those 160 K Dine folks out there.... tickets you aren't selling now.

                      Jack


                        United States
                        Member #379
                        June 5, 2002
                        11296 Posts
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                        Posted: July 29, 2005, 9:43 am - IP Logged

                        Hot Lotto is still drawn with balls, but NM doesn't offer it.

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                          New Mexico
                          United States
                          Member #12305
                          March 10, 2005
                          2984 Posts
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                          Posted: July 29, 2005, 9:48 am - IP Logged

                          Most New Mexican's spend a lot of time wondering how Hot Ball comes up with numbers, and whether New Mexico offers it.

                          Thanks for the info.  I'll pass it around.

                          Jack

                            LOTTOMIKE's avatar - cash money.jpg
                            Tennessee
                            United States
                            Member #7853
                            October 15, 2004
                            11338 Posts
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                            Posted: July 30, 2005, 12:26 am - IP Logged

                            Hot Lotto is still drawn with balls, but NM doesn't offer it.

                            they might in the future....