Arbitrage theory

5. Sports Arbitrage Practice

As soon as you have funded your accounts at several bookmakers and set up some arb services, the time comes to finally start making those arbitrage deals. To do this is, of course, a tad harder than to speak about it, and you have to move really, really fast to achieve a result. You need to learn working efficiently, wasting no spare second.

Let us review the arbitrage winning scheme step by step. First, you see an available arb deal, right? The specificities of this moment may vary depending on the arb service of your choice. Of course, you might also try and search for an arb deal all by yourself, but I must warn you in advance: special systems always do it better than a single individual could. At least when it comes to straightforward arbs! More complex once are best hand-picked, that much is true, but you have to learn the basics pretty well before you move on to this matter. When you’re just starting, it would be most unwise to waste time on surfing sites and mentally comparing the prices there. Even the odds comparison web systems such as Best Betting or Oddschecker seldom can find arbs for you as the automated “arb hunters” do their job way faster.

So – here you’ve found an arbitrage deal with a familiar bookmaker. Unless you use a system with an arb calculator in it, you’ll have to put the price numbers into a special spreadsheet that can be downloaded from Oddsandbets or Arbcruncher, the two sites that are quite famous among arbitrageurs. If you’ll need to make an exchange of any sort for one or more legs of the arb, calculate the correct commission and include the deduction in the price. Then you have to quickly open the bookmakers’ sites, log onto them and move fast to the pages with the bets you’re interested in. Make sure the prices correspond to the ones the arb hunting system has offered you, the deal is availables and the limits suit your purpose. Then it is time for stakes placing and bet making. Sounds simple, huh? It’s only that a mistake can, sadly enough, be made at any stage, including the very first ones.

So, here is a comprehensible list of actions for you:

1)    The stakes are not going to be calculated automatically? Well use an online calculator or a spreadshape. Be aware of the exact bet type – there may be 2-way, 3-way etc arbs, and they differ. If there’s going to be some kind of an exchange, check the commission levels thoroughly. What follows? Stakes input, naturally!

2)    Now start up your browser and choose the necessary bookmaker sites from the bookmarks. You keep these sites there, don’t you?

3)    Next –  log in! It is best to keep the login details in your memory or at the very least in close vicinity to your laptop.

4)    Find the first of the bets you need, check everything, adjust the stakes if there appears to be a limit, make a bet.

5)    Rush to repeat steps 3-4 with the rest of the bookmaker sites!

It has to be obvious that a number of problems may arise along the way. Of course, usually they don’t come onto the beginning arbitrageur all at once, but as you move into the territory where larger sums exist, it is easy to cross the mark with one of the bookies. After this, a really quick work of thought is essential in order to find your sea legs in the newly minted situation. What helps a lot is automating the process as much as you can, say, setting up one of the browsers to be always booted and spurred for your trading action.

If you’re going to cover one of the legs at the Betfiar site, the search is going to be easy meet for a change as these guys didn’t hesitate to give us their own indexing system. I wonder why other bookies don’t have similar features at their sites – it simplifies the task for the better enormously. Sometimes I use the Betfair search system to find the information about the event that I’m going to bet on at another site – then it is much easier to find there.

Okay, now you must be quite able to use the arb service systems – and the arbitrage deals available there. As for such aspects as ‘which leg goes first’, this comes with experience – and with constant studies! I’ll give you some tips later, or you can go to www.surebet bookies.com and look for advice there.

If you want to play big, note that it may be necessary to phone the bookmaker’s office occasionally. When it comes to Skybet whose online limits are frustratingly low unless we’re talking of a domestic soccer came, you’ll always have to make a call.

I’ve only talked to you about the online bookies heretofore, but there also can be arbs at the local bookmaker’s shops, you see. It will be highly relevant when we speak about soccer, which is well deserving of its own chapter since 30 to 40 per cent of all the arbs you’re likely to get involve soccer. As I’ve touched on this subject, I will immediately give you a table which shows how many arbs you get from every widespread kind of sport. Of course this data isn’t absolute, in fact, the number are quite prone to oscillations depending on the season. But at least you’ll get a kind of picture.

Tennis 40%
Soccer 30%
Golf 7%
Rugby 5%
Cricket 5%
Boxing 5%
Baseball 3%
Darts 3%
Other sports 2%

So, here is a fully working system right in front of you. Study it closely and carefully before rushing into action! Arbitrage is hazardous and fun, true, but it also includes long hours of hard, collected work. So it would be wise to chase after those arbs that offer enough profit for you to feel satisfied. If you look at any arb hunting system’s month-end account of the arbs it has found throughout a month, you’ll see that most deals are below 1%  which, in all honesty, makes them kind of jerkwater – unless you’re looking for a handy opportunity to move some money around. As for me, I hardly ever mess with anything below 2%, and the average arb for me is now 2.9% , a fact that I find rather pleasing. Every once in a while I get deals up to 24%, and 10% ones are not infrequent, but 2-4% is what comes into my live of view the most. So, you see that if you manage to get 500 pounds in bulk, you get something like a 14 pounds profit. Of course, this profit doesn’t sound all that big, but if you make ten trades of this size a day, you end up with 140 by evening and can earn up to 4200 a month – without any taxes.

When planning your day, now you’ll have to move around the times when the bookie’s open up and when the draws for the majority of events are usually announced. There’s a surge from about 08:00 and to 11:00 GMT, and then another one from 14:00 to 17:00 when the US books open. However, throughout the day the deals keep dropping, since there are plenty of sports and bookmaker’s all around the world. Of course, once again, a lot depends on the season. Get a sports calendar so that you never feel like you’re in a trading limbo!

All the above, of course, relates to the arbs found through special services, not to the ones you find – or create – all by yourself. We’ll talk about the more sophisticated arbitrage deals later, and when you’ve waded through all the details, you’ll know for yourself that those deals offer a higher return and last longer. Also, plenty of arbs aren’t waiting to be discovered – they’re waiting to be created. This isn’t arbitrage as it is usually understood, but it is a profitable, highly interesting business, too.

Leave a Comment