Sunday, 1 March 2009


February is usually one of my least profitable months, but yesterday saw me say goodbye to my third best month ever, behind only Januarys of 2008 and 2009, which of course makes for a promising start to this year.

As a month, February was only my 9th best (4th worst!) month before this year, but now it is up to 4th best. This is especially pleasing given that the Premium Charge was applied every week.

Speaking of which, I have been attempting to reduce this by using a modified ‘straddle’ strategy on certain Match Odds / Handicap markets. I used to use this strategy in my options trading days, and options markets and the Betfair markets do have a lot in common. One side of the transaction will expire worthless.

By picking games with a low handicap, and backing the underdogs on both markets, a profit on the overall outcome is ‘almost’ guaranteed. I say ‘almost’, because in a game where the handicap is +1.5, a one point win by the team giving the points will see a loss in both markets. Not good. I have had a couple of close shaves, but so far so good.

At least when I do take a hit (and it will happen) the irony is that this will help my Premium Charge reduction even more! There are other ways of achieving this (for example the 0-0 in football is often a different price in the Correct Score, Next Goal, Total Goals and First Goal markets, and arbitration opportunities sometimes exist).


Mark Iverson said...

Great result Roberto!

I'm in the process of reviewing ways to reduce the charge as well.

All the best,


Cassini said...

I guess it's a nice problem to have, but it's problem nonetheless. Good luck.

Chart Trader said...

i'm Intersterd in the chart you produced on your this the market you talked about? if so which software are you using as i'm attemptin to trade the markets mainly using the charting software on betangel.

i worked in the city many years ag.( BOA) and had experiance with options and using charts on the fx trying to apply this to exchange trading and maybe we can bounce some ideas off each other.

Gr8 blg by the way.

Cassini said...

Sorry to disappoint Chart Trader, but the chart shown was just a random picture from the web to illustrate the straddle I was talking about. I don't use any fancy software, but there are many parallels with options trading on the betting exchanges. Best of all - if you stick to legitimate markets, there is no insider trading. What you see is the same as everyone else. Good luck.

Anonymous said...


If you're aiming to straddle bets over match odds and handicap markets, dont you have to back the underdog (or fav) on one market and then LAY the same team on the other?

Its quite late and I havent slept for quite a while so this might be my mind turning to mush and getting it all wrong though!


Cassini said...

Morning JPG - I only do this on small spreads. I back the underdog in both markets. E.g. Magic are giving 2.5 to the Sixers. Back Sixers in the Match Odds market at 2.14, and back Magic -2.5 in the Handicap at 2.14. Unless Magic win by 1 or 2 (always a possibility), then one market will win me 1.14 and the other will lose me 1. (This was an example from Saturday, a game that came a little too close for comfort to hitting the gap, but it worked out in the end).

Anonymous said...


Ah! I see what you mean now - in effect, we were boh right!

In your original blog entry, you mention backing the underdog in both markets. I assumed that meant the same team in both, not appreciating the fact that the underdog can be different in both markets! However, to be fair to myself, the method I offered is actually what you were mentioning and doing anyway... so thats that cleared up! :)

By the way, did this approach help you out when option trading?

Cassini said...

My option trading days are best forgotten. I soon learned that the world of options (and commodity trading for that matter) is filled with people who knew far more than I did about the underlying security. Yes, the straddle helped, but I suspect it only helped prolong the belief that I knew what I was doing!