How odds are set
The odds are set by the betting companies based on a variety of factors. If we look at a football match, many factors are taken into account. Of course, the team’s ranking in their league is an important factor but also injuries, home or away pitch, latest match results and so on. When it comes to an assessment, human factors come into play and a match can be assessed completely differently depending on gaming company. If you are interested in sportsbook betting and odds, it may be worth checking out some of the different betting companies.
An interesting example is the outcome of the US presidential election in 2016. Most observers gave Hillary Clinton fairly low odds while Donald Trump was almost counted out completely. The odds that Trump would win the election were therefore very high, but as we all know it turned out a different way than expected!
Fixed vs Flexible odds
When odds are set by the betting companies, they can be set as fixed or flexible odds. Flexible odds means that the odds can be changed right up to the start of the game depending on how the casino’s players bet. If there are large bets on a certain outcome, the odds of that outcome go down. In this way, the casino or sportsbook cannot lose.
Fixed odds, on the other hand, are set by the betting companies and do not change until the match starts. It is a risk the gaming companies take and sometimes they lose money on a match. Now, we are not suggesting that the gaming companies go bankrupt from a single game or a single big loss. It is interesting, however, that the large international private betting companies often have significantly better odds than state owned casinos or sportsbooks. This is because the state-owned companies generate large profits for its owner, the state, therefore the profits must only be reinvested and not used as a share dividend.
How to write odds
There are several ways to write odds in sportsbetting. It is often said that there are four major categories of writing odds – a general European model, a British, an American and an Asian. We can start by looking at the way odds are written in Europe.
In mainland Europe, decimal odds are the most common form. If the odds are set at 2.50, it means that you get two and a half times the money you bet on every win. Let’s say you bet €100 and win. You then get €250 back. However, the profit will only be €150 because you have to deduct your bet of €100. Simple, right?
This way of writing odds is usually called English odds, and is the most common way of describing odds in England and on English betting sites. The odds are written as a fraction. The odds 5/2 means that to win 5, you must bet 2. If there is a win and you have bet £100, you win £250. Written as decimal odds, it will be 2.50. This is not as easy to read as European odds, if you ask us. It also take a little bit of math to get it right.
By far the most complicated way to write odds are the American odds. But if you want to bet on American sites, you must understand the American way of writing the odds. Here, the odds are written as plus or minus. If it is a plus odds, it shows how big the profit will be if you bet $1. If it is an odds with a minus sign in front, the odds tell you how big your bet must be to win $1. An example is that if it says -100, you must bet 100 to win 100. The payout then becomes 200, 100 is your win and 100 is your bet. Our heads were spinning after we wrote this paragraph, so don’t blame yourself if you didn’t understand everything! We prefer the European and Asian ways of writing odds because of their simplicity.
This is probably by far the simplest betting system. Asian odds only show the net profit on your bet. The bet is deducted and it only shows what you win. If we compare with the decimal form (European odds), odds of 1.50 would be written as 0.50 in Asian odds. That is, on a bet of €100, it gives a dividend / profit of €50. Simple yet powerful. Why make odds and betting harder than it needs to be?