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What are Betting Exchanges ?

WHAT ARE BETTING EXCHANGES? - AN EXPLANATION AND BASIC TACTICS. Betting exchanges online were only introduced a few years ago,by British firm Betfair,and have grown so rapidly,that they now,not the bookmakers,set the prices for most sporting events.The bookmakers have to consult and respond to what is happening on the exchanges.Even if you have never had a bet on the exchanges,you should be very happy about their existance.A visible example is the prices on offer in British horseracing,whereas at one time it was most unusual to see an outsider at odds of more than 33/1,but now many runners are of ten returned with starting prices of 66/1+,this is entirely due to the exchanges.Not so obvious is the day to day tightening of percentages on all betting events which benefit all punters.

Despite this you can still get far better odds on the exchanges,typically 20% better according to the exchanges themselves. Betfair is the dominant betting exchange,with Betdaq a good alternative.There is very little competition - is this a bad thing ?.Absolutely not.If you think about it,the best exchange is going to be the one with the most punters,both bettors and layers.

The exchanges.don't actually do anything !.They just open the doors,maintain the site,but it is up to the people who enter and participate who create everything themselves. HOW DO YOU BET?.You can back anything on the exchanges,you can lay anything on the exchanges,and you can back and lay the same selection.In fact this is the best approach,if you can back a horse(we will use horseracing in most examples,but could be any sport)at,lets say 12.00(11/1)and then lay a horse at,lets say 9.00(8/1),you are now in the happy position of not being able to lose.Lets say you bet in $10 units(you can have much smaller,or larger bets if you so wish),so if the horse wins,you will win $110,but of course you have to pay the person who bet the horse at 9.00 with you.

In this example you win $110 and pay $80,meaning a profit of $30.If the horse loses it has cost you nothing,you bet $10,you layed $10,and in effect you have had a free bet !.Don't worry about trying to keep track of your bets,the screen will automatically show you what your liabilities are for each horse - green for profit,red for loss.Also bear in mind that the exchanges have to make money somewhere,and they charge commission on winning bets,nothing on losing bets.The commission is usually 5%,but this figure falls as you accumulate loyalty points.For presentation purposes decimals are used for prices,this allows the minutest of price changes to be catered for,but it is awkward at first for punters who are used to fractional odds,but you soon get used to adding stake into prices displayed.Some examples - 10.00 = 9/1, 14.00=13/1, 4.5=7/2, 2.

1=11/10 etc. THINGS CAN GO WRONG.Sometimes you are going to take a price,with the view to laying at lower price,only to be dismayed to see the price drift alarmingly.What to do now?.Well don't panic,not yet anyway!.You have got three choices.Firstly i assume you fancied the selection,so maybe just let it run,after all just because it drifts,it does not mean it can't win.Secondly you may want to lay it at a bigger price than you backed it.In other words,hope it gets beat and you finish level.If it does win you will have to pay the difference between the price you backed,and the price you laid.

This is the worst option - it is infuriating to pay out money on a selection you fancied originally.Thirdly,you can also back horses(again i refer to horseracing,but applies to any sporting event)in running,during the race.This i feel is the best option.But what price do you offer ?.You can dive in and out of the race offering different prices as the event unfolds,or you can offer high price or low price and leave it.Well should it be high or low?.It depends!.If you offer a high price(by high i don't mean higher than you backed it)you are more liable to get a buyer,as most horses,or teams,at some time get into contention sometime during an event.So by laying high you could get out of trouble and finish level.


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