There are two reasons for the boom in the sports betting industry. One reason is a little risky from a legal standpoint, while the other is perfectly legal.
First, gambling has undergone a groundbreaking change due to the growth of the Internet. Online international sports betting operators such as Bovada, Sportsbetting.ag and 5Dimes dominate the industry. By establishing official headquarters overseas, these sites circumvent the restrictions on sports betting in some countries and build customer trust in their legitimacy. It only takes a few clicks to enter some credit card information or deposit virtual money, register an account, and place as many bets as you want.
The second reason for the rapid growth of the sports betting industry is that it is an easy source of revenue for the government. Over the past few decades, state governments have become increasingly reliant on legalized gambling for their budgets. Legal gaming usually takes the form of betting on specific sports, such as horse racing and lotteries.
Online sports betting offers many forms of wagering. For example, a game between two teams can be wagered on either a sole winner or a handicap. If you can’t decide which team you like, you can bet on the “over” or “under” and win when the combined score of the two teams exceeds or falls below some number.
The bookmaker is like a stockbroker, making the bet into a market. The “odds” are a flexible reflection of what the bettor wants and the possibility of getting new information about the game. The odds will continue to change until the bookmaker feels confident that he can take the risk on each side. Why would the bookmaker take sides instead of balancing the bets and taking the guaranteed 10% profit? Taking all bets gives the bookmaker the advantage of having access to information.
The casino takes the handicap prediction from a mathematical model. This calculation takes into account past behavior and gives a rough estimate of which teams will be more popular with punters. It then manually adjusts to the teams that attract more money. The people that sports betting operators bring in to set the odds are some of the most informed and advanced gamblers in the world. A few people can constantly think ahead of the bookmaker. In other words, all but the best gamblers will lose in the long run.
There’s always someone smarter than you
So far, we’ve discussed two reasons why you’ll lose: the house takes a cut, and the house doesn’t set fair odds because the house has better information than you do. Now, let’s add a third reason. It’s not just that the bookmaker knows more than you do, it’s that the top gamblers do. There are not many top gamblers, but they move a lot of money in the gaming market.
Whatever advanced models make certain information gamblers so successful, these models are eventually replicated by odds actuaries. Include them in their predictions of what to bet on and see what they will bet on. The information gambler loses the advantage of having better information. The casinos become better informed, which also gives them an advantage.
More informed gamblers are becoming less of a problem because the betting market is getting bigger and more complex. A lot of money is flowing into this market, so much so that it is like the stock market. The sports betting market attracts very sophisticated people who use analytical data to identify opportunities to take advantage of, even if the chances are very slim. Instead, the bookmakers put more resources into chasing these experienced, good gamblers.