Analysis Vital Even in Non-Sports Bets
Gambling has become pervasive in our post-modern society. Here is why analysis is important, even in non-sports betting.
We can bet on lotteries, horse races, casino games at either a Vegas land-based casino or a Vegas online casino, and in most of the world we can legally bet on sports. In the United States, we can’t legally bet on sports in most places.
Only Nevada, Oregon, Delaware, and Wyoming have legal sports betting because it was grandfathered into PASPA, the law from 1992 that made sports betting illegal everywhere else in the US. Given that only Nevada has the full gamut of sports betting, one could say that it has a virtual monopoly on legal sports betting in the US.
That may all change and very soon as the Supreme Court is set to render its decision of an appeal from New Jersey that claims that PASPA was unconstitutional when it was passed and remains so today. Illegal sports betting is a big business in the US, generating tens of billions of dollars’ worth of bets annually. States would love to get their hands on some of that money in the form of taxes.
Bet on Non-Sports, Too
As much as Americans love to bet on sports, they also love to bet on non-sports. There have recently appeared some news items discussing all the various non-sports bets people can make. If and when the Supreme Court voids PASPA, you’ll be able to make these non-sports bets along with your sports bets.
You can bet on who will be the candidate for President in 2020 from each party. You can bet on who will win which primary. When the time comes, you’ll be able bet in Congressional and gubernatorial races, too.
The biggest problem bettors face in betting on politics is the same problem they have betting on sports in general. People tend to overestimate the winning chances of a team they like. They don’t look at the fundamentals but rather “bet their heart”. In modern American politics, that means betting your ideology rather than betting according to reality.
It’s also very early to bet on 2020. So much can happen between now and the primaries that betting on a final candidate, especially for the Democrats is a complete craps shoot. As much as betting on the Democratic candidate might be, it’s also way too early to assume that President Trump will be the Republican nominee.
First, a lot can happen. Second, Trump is close to 70 years old so his health could suddenly deteriorate. Third, a large and powerful wing of the party still does not like him and may support an alternative candidate. Finally, he might simply decide to get on with his life.
Financial Markets and Instruments
You can bet within financial markets. This type of gambling is called buying stock or investing in the stock market. In reality, it is as much gambling as betting on blackjack or video poker is.
But sports betting sites will also take bets on how the markets as a whole will perform in the coming months, weeks, days, hours, or even minutes. There is already a type of gambling that deals with market performance called binary options. Sports betting sites might accept such bets but probably not. Sports betting sites will try to be experts in sports betting so will likely take the simplest financial bets possible.
Betting financials means becoming familiar with technical analysis. There are two basic analytical tools investors use: fundamental and technical analysis. Some investors swear by fundamental and some swear by technical analysis. The basic difference is that fundamental analysis talks about what the company should do based on its niche, its management team, its product, and its competitors. Technical analysis talks about how investors have acted in the past in relation to the company.
When you’re betting financials at a sports betting site, you want to know how others are betting.
One of the favorite bets people make is who will win the major awards given out by the industry itself. You can also bet on who will win a reality show competition. Both of these competitions are popularity contests with a very big difference.
When people in the entertainment industry vote on their annual awards they are voting on who is more popular, of course. But they also want to be seen as making professionally realistic choices. If two candidates are up for the same awards and one clearly deserves it more even though he or she is far less popular than the other, the better show or performance will almost always win the award.
In reality shows, the winners are almost always determined by who the audience likes the most. The judges weed out the obvious losers, beginning from the auditions and then throughout the competition, but the voting public makes the final decision.
Here, again, you need to have your hand on the pulse of technical analysis. It isn’t a matter of which finalist is better; it’s a matter of which finalist is better liked.
Any bet offered that deals with weather more than three days ahead is a bad bet from the get-go. Trained weather people, with sophisticated models and expensive equipment, get the forecast wrong regularly. So don’t bet on whether the storm next week will be a nor’easter or not.
When to Bet
We have said that you should bet on only those sports that you know well. If you bet on a sport you don’t know well, it will be the same as if you threw darts at a board and bet that way. Sports cannot be scripted in the famous words of Spike Lee. Because they can’t be scripted, if you bet on a sport you know well, you’ll have the advantage of some measure of expertise.
The same applies on non-sports bets. You might bet on Dancing with Stars but only if you know something about dancing. You can bet on American Idol if you have some idea what singing professionally is all about. And if you know the public well, you might make money betting on popularity contests even if you don’t know much about the exact area you’re betting on.