Odds and Bookmakers
“If a business is worth a dollar and I can buy it for 40 cents, something good may happen to me.”
— Walter Schloss
This saying appeals to so many of us involved in the betting world, and this man being one of the best investors of the century must have known what he was talking about. If applied to gambling, we’re going to try to explain what odds really are, how bookmakers use them, and show you that you don’t have to be a genius in mathematics to be able to get them right.
Odds are the possibilities of something happening or the money you will win in case that particular event you went for happens. Upon placing your bet you will be faced with three types of odds, and you can be assured that every bookmaker will display them on their site. Depending on where you are in the world, you can place the bet and be sure of what was required from you to change.
Odds can be conveyed in different forms: fractions, decimals and American odds. Thus, we’ve come to the following classification of not just World Cup odds, but general odds in betting:
- Fractional odds are shown as numbers divided by a dash, and the way to go around them is to divide the first number by the second one, all the while remembering that if you win as a result of a fractional bet you get the profit and the initial sum of money you placed your wager with. – Decimal odds seem to be the most appreciated type of odds among bettors, new and old alike. They are easier to understand in the sense that they clearly state how much you will win if you place a stake on 1 unit. – American odds are often called money lines odds because they are so different from the rest on the market. These odds are always presented as either positive or negative numbers. If the odds are positive it means they are designed for the underdog and show how much money can come into your bankroll if you bet 100 units. If the number is negative, the bets were created for the clear favorite of the game and show you how much money you’ll have to invest in order to win 100 units of the currency you’re betting with.
Now that you know the basic types of bets, we can go back to the people behind these odds—the bookies. They are the ones who accept your bet on any event or outcome of a match and pay you back if your prediction was right. Usually the higher the odds are, the bigger the possibility of winning a great amount of money while still placing a bet on your favorite team. Who is your favorite for the World Cup 2014 in Brazil?
If you want to attempt and be smarter than the bookie, you might want to remember the following terms, as they’re quite commonly met, and we wouldn’t want you getting mixed up in them.
- The odds will change as the match day approaches and new markets become available. – A stake is the money you’re betting on whichever outcome you want. – Short odds are assigned when the probability of something happening is really high (as in it will happen and you are looking at a sure bet), while the opposite result is called long odds. – Odds against are bets placed on the underdog with a chance to receive more than twice the amount you bet.
Now that the major types of odds were explained and you know what a bookmaker is, you could start studying different types of betting markets to see how odds are marketed to a specific field. With the World Cup fast approaching, you can be absolutely sure that the markets will fly high and you won’t have trouble finding a bet to your liking.