By Kate Northrop
AUSTIN, TEXAS — In an announcement on Tuesday afternoon, the Texas Lottery revealed that sales of scratch-off tickets surged to $112 million from the previous week's sales of $95 million.
Revenue for scratch-off tickets during this week are up $15 million compared to 2019, a 16% increase. The boost comes after a month of weakened overall sales, mostly for draw games, that are likely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The full report is available on the official Texas Lottery website.
A surge of lottery sales during a stay-at-home order is shocking, but some speculate that the growth is due to the release of relief payments beginning in mid-April. Spring lottery sales see a similar increase as income tax refunds are distributed.
Of course, only time will tell if this is the case. It is possible that the one-week sales jump could be a one-off instance.
Lottery spokeswoman Lauren Callahan stated that "the agency will continue to closely monitor the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on lottery sales."
According to the official Texas Lottery website, all Texas claim centers remain closed until further notice. Prizes of $599 or less may continue to be claimed at official Texas lottery retailers, while all winning scratch and draw game prizes up to $5 million should be claimed by mail. Prizes over $5 million must be claimed in person at the Texas Lottery Commission Headquarters in Austin by appointment only.
"The health and safety of all remains our top priority."