The £16m football accumlator

19/01/2014 | By | Reply More

After a busy week I’ve been catching up on email and reading through some reports and stuff. I’m a little late but spotted this and thought I’d share it.

“Online Sportsbook has continued to show strong wagering growth, up 48% in the first two weeks of 2014.  However, football results in week 2 were highly unfavourable with an unusually high number of odds-on favourites winning.  Driven by the impact of this on our otherwise very attractive accumulator business, we recorded a c£13m loss in the week.  There is no certainty that we can recoup this shortfall to internal expectations but based on previous experience of such customer-friendly outcomes, such as ‘Dettori Day’ in 1996, we anticipate a positive benefit from increased customer confidence, particularly with so much of the season ahead and with the 2014 World Cup to come.”

A bit of digging shows that the main cause of the loss was all top seven premier league teams winning. Scouting around the other bookmakers showed they had suffered as well.  Ladbrokes said the Premier League wins had likely cost the betting industry between £25m and £30m, while Coral revealed it was the worst weekend in its 88-year history.

I’m always surprised that bookmakers still don’t hedge positions, but I guess that in the long run it’s the right thing to do. I’m familiar with a lot of hedging that takes place across gambling and financial markets and few hedge. They rely instead on the dumb money equally things out.

This reminded of a meeting I had last week were we had a lot of discussion about some really interesting stats about how the betting markets still stubbornly exhibit consistent biases. It’s amazing how some patterns just endlessly repeat. All of these wonderful tools that are now available to aid your betting but still people revert to standard, sub optimal, behaviour. However, it seems on this occasion it was the punters than won, to the tune of £16m!


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Category: Football trading strategies

About the Author ()

I left a good job in the consumer technology industry to go a trade on Betfair for a living way back in June 2000. I've been here ever since pushing very boundaries of what's possible on betting exchanges and loved every minute of it.

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