Science

Men with high IQs are more likely to do this unusual activity

Men with high IQs are more likely to do this unusual activity

The study found a strong link between intelligence and skill-based gambling.

Recent research shows that Finnish men with a higher IQ are more likely to bet on horse racing.

According to a recent study by researchers from the University of Eastern Finland i University of Liverpoolmen with higher IQs are more likely to bet on horse races.

Men with higher numerical IQs were found to be more likely to participate in skill-based gambling such as horse racing, choose more complex betting options and spend more money, according to a study published in Journal of Behavioral Decision Making.

The study involved more than 15,000 Finns who took an intelligence test as part of their mandatory military service while enlisting in the Finnish Defense Forces. This was cross-referenced with detailed records of men’s online gambling behavior as well as Statistics Finland on their socioeconomic status, income and education level.

Women are not included in the data because Finnish legislation only requires men to do military service and pass an intelligence test.

Commenting on the findings, Professor David Forrest, from the University of Liverpool’s School of Management, said: “Our research found a strong correlation between men with high IQs and those who engage in skilled gambling, such as betting on horse racing. It is important to note that our findings cannot necessarily be generalized to chance-based gambling such as slot machines. However, there is very little previous research on the link between intelligence and skill-based gambling, so finding such a strong link is significant.”

The study does not provide a definitive answer as to why men with higher IQs would enjoy betting on horse races, but the researchers believe it may be because men with higher IQs enjoy the mathematical challenge of such skill-based betting.

Associate Professor Jani Saastamoinen from the University of Eastern Finland said: “Betting could be compared to solving crosswords. Maybe bookies like to crunch the numbers and find winning horses – even though they know they’ll end up losing money in the long run.”

Reference: “Does IQ Predict Engagement in Skill-Based Gambling? The big evidence from horse racing betting” by Niko Suhonen, Jani Saastamoinen, David Forrest and Tuom Kainulainen, 4 September 2022. Journal of Behavioral Decision Making.
DOI: 10.1002/bdm.2300





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