A study following 1000 Pacific children from their birth in south Auckland has found a significant number are gambling for money at age nine.
Researchers from AUT University have told an international gambling conference in Auckland that most of the children report gambling with cards, and 60% played housie.
Dr Maria Bellringer says 27% are betting for money, mostly playing housie with their families.
She says the concern is the family's endorsement could lead children into other kinds of gambling, and to think gambling for money is a good thing to do.
The study also found children with links to youth or street gangs were twice as likely to gamble, but did not ask why or what kind of gambling was involved.