Sunday, June 04, 2006

Betting With Odds in Your Favour

Today, I was happy to read Michael Christie's Reuters article, "US hurricane outlook draws betting surge". According to the article, sites like Wager Web allow people to bet on things like hurricane seasons (for example, "Will there be a Category 5 Atlantic Hurricane in 2006?"). Other sites, including Trade Sports and Bet Royal, let you bet on political events.

Ethics, morals, and legal systems aside, my question is whether it is possible to bet in a way where the odds are in your favour?

If you're smart enough, the answer is "yes". I remember reading a Wired article a while back, The High Tech Trifecta, which describes some people's attempts to use computers and statistical tools in horse racing. Maybe the same can be done in other areas as well?

Neural networks are being applied to financial markets, but why not other systems as well? It's all a matter of knowing the independent variables, and making proper predictions. You may not even need neural networks - maybe multiple regressions and other analyses will shed enough light to raise the probablistic expectation in your favour.

I guess this brings on a whole new meaning to "If it's raining on the first Monday of June and you're at your local horse racing track..."


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