The Texas Holdem Rules pic

How to Play Texas Hold’Em


  1. Introduction

    Texas hold’em is the most popular of all poker variations. All of the marquee tournaments around the world (WSOP, WPT, EPT, etc.) are played in a variation of this game.

    Don’t let the simplicity of the game mislead you. The number of possible game situations is so vast that, when playing at a high level, the game can be very complex. Thus the renowned expression: “It takes a moment to learn, but a lifetime to master.”

    When playing the game for the first time, you will be confronted with some of the basic rules which are explained below. For starters, each player is dealt two hole cards in Texas hold’em with the overall goal of making the best five-card hand. Play moves clockwise around the table, starting with action to the left of the dealer button. Generally, the first two players to the immediate left of the button are required to post a small blind and a large blind to initiate the betting. From there, action occurs on multiple streets: preflop, the flop, the turn and the river.

  2. Button

    The button determines which player at the table is the acting dealer. In Texas hold’em, the player on button, or last active player closest to the button, receives last action on all post-flop streets of play.

    When playing in casinos or online, you won’t have to worry about who the dealer is. When playing with friends, everyone usually takes a turn at dealing the cards. After each hand has been completed, the button rotates one position to the left. While staff dealers handle the duty of dealing out the cards in brick-and-mortar casinos, and the process is automated online, this isn’t the case in home games. A small tip is to find the most skillful dealer in the game, offer him or her a beer or a small tip and have them deal the game while the button keeps track of which player is the “dealer.”

    While the dealer button often dictates who the first players are to begin the wagering with the small blind and big blind, it also determines where the dealing of the cards begin. The player to the immediate left of the dealer button in the small blind, receives the first card and then the dealer pitches cards around the table in a clockwise motion from player to player until each has received two starting cards.

  3. The Blinds

    Before every new round, two players at the table are obligated to post blinds, or forced bets that begin the wagering. Without these blinds, the game would be very boring because no one would be required to put any money into the pot. In tournaments, the blinds are raised at regular intervals. As the number of players keeps decreasing and the stacks of the remaining players keep getting bigger, it is a necessity that the blinds keep increasing throughout a tournament. In cash games, the blinds will always stay the same for a given limit of which the game is being played.

    The player directly to the left of the button posts the small blind, and the player to his or her direct left posts the big blind. The small blind is generally half the amount of the big blind, although this stipulation varies from room to room and can also be dependent of the game being played.

  4. The Aim of the Game

    Winning, of course! But in order to achieve this, you need to be holding the best combination of cards.

    In Texas hold’em, every player receives two cards face down, called hole cards. Every player keeps these cards to concealed until the end of all of the betting rounds, which is called the showdown. Texas hold’em is a game of community cards, where five cards are displayed in the middle of the table to be used in conjunction with a player’s two hole cards in order to make the best five-card holding.

    The five community cards are displayed in the middle of the table on the flop, the turn and the river. The flop consists of the first three community cards, the turn adds another and the river completes the board with one more. These five cards are visible for every player. Once all five cards are down, players have to make the best five-card combination from these seven cards. This can be done using both of your hole cards in combination with three community cards, one hole card in combination with four community cards or no hole cards and playing all five community cards as one’s hand. The player with the best combination of cards wins the pot, which is the sum of all bets that have been placed during that hand.

  5. First Betting Round

    The first round of betting takes place right after all hole cards have been dealt to each player. The first player to act is the player to the left of the big blind, and this player then has three options:

    Call: match the amount of the big blind
    Raise: increase the bet within the specific limits of the game
    Fold: throw one’s hand away

    If a player chooses to fold, he or she is no longer eligible to win the current hand.

    The amount a player can raise to depends on the game that is being played, but most commonly must be at least twice the big blind.

    Limit hold’em: you can only raise by the amount of the big blind
    Pot-limit hold’em: you can only raise a maximum of the pot size (the total bets that have been placed at that time)
    No-limit hold’em: you can raise by any amount you want up to the maximum that your chip stack allows, and betting all of your chips is deemed “all in”

    The players who follow have the same three options: call, raise or fold. In the case of raising, the minimum allotted amount for a raise must be equal to the original raise amount. For example, let’s say the big blind in a game is $10 and the first player to act raises to $40 in a game of no-limit hold’em. The second player to act has the option to call for $40, fold and no longer play the hand, or raise to $70 as the first raise amount of $30, the difference between the wager placed and the original big blind.

  6. Second Betting Round

    After the first preflop betting round has been completed, the second betting round takes place on the flop after the first three community cards have been dealt. In this betting round, and all that follow from now on, action starts with the first active player to the left of the button. Along with the options to bet, call, fold and raise, a player now has the option to check if no betting action has occurred prior. A check simply means to pass the action to the next player in the hand.

  7. Third Betting Round

    The fourth community card, called the turn, is dealt face-up following all betting action on the flop. Once this has been completed, another round of betting occurs, similar to that on the previous street of play. Again players have the option to options to bet, call, fold, raise and check.
  8. Final Betting Round

    The fifth community card, called the river, is dealt face-up following all betting action on the turn. Once this has been completed, another round of betting occurs, similar to that on the previous street of play. Again players have the option to options to bet, call, fold, raise and check. After all betting action has been completed, the remaining players in the hand with hole cards now expose their holdings to determine a winner. This is called the showdown.

  9. Showdown:


The remaining players open their hole cards, and with the assistance of the dealer, a winning hand is determined. The player with the best combination of five cards will win the pot.


The Interbank FX exchange rate

Interbank and Forex

The forex market has many players, large and small

As discussed before, like most markets, the forex essentially works because many participants are buying and selling a fairly uniform product. Currency contracts at the retail level are most often denominated in 100,000 or 10,000 units of the base currency in the pair. There are many dealers who will break a lot into units smaller than that, but a full-size 100K or mini-size 10K lot is the most common.

Forex dealers can be classified as over-the-counter market makers. That means that when you are buying a currency pair, they are the seller. Likewise, when you are selling a currency pair, they are the buyer. The quotes you see on a trading platform are the prices the dealer is willing to buy or sell the currency contract for.

That seems pretty straight forward, but you may wonder how the prices offered by all the dealers are virtually identical if they (the dealers) are independent. That question causes a lot of confusion in the market, even for experienced traders. Oddly enough, the source of that confusion is, in some cases, the dealers themselves.

That’s why it’s vital to educate yourself on the dealing process, and to carefully investigate a dealer before opening an account.

To get a better idea how all this works behind the scenes, let’s take a look at forex market participants and how they relate to each other.

Banks—The “Interbank Market” is one of the most misused terms in the retail forex market. The interbank market is what it sounds like; a network of banks that trade currencies with each other. There are a lot of banks in the network, and many of the largest forex dealers are considered part of the interbank market. Each of these banks trades with the other banks in the intermarket through the use of dealing, or trading, desks. Each bank’s dealing desk is in contact with the other banks’ desks as though they were on an exchange floor. So many transactions take place throughout the day that the interbank market participants have very uniform pricing. In other words, if you froze time, the prices available for a forex pair would be virtually identical from bank to bank.

Forex Dealers—Institutions who service the retail market and have access, through brokerage agreements, to one or more of the banks involved. The dealer receives current pricing on each forex pair from the banks they have relationships with. The price one dealer sees is the same as the price the other dealers see, because they all have access to the interbank market. In fact, many dealers use the same major banks—like Goldman Sachs or Deutsche Bank—to access the interbank market. A forex dealer will then send these prices through to you, the retail trader, in your trading station.

Dealers make money through the “spread.” The spread is the difference between the price a dealer will buy a currency contract from you (the bid price), and the price it can sell that contract to you, or another trader (the ask price). Spreads are an important factor for forex traders to understand, both in picking a dealer, and managing trades.
The forex dealer may modify currency prices in a couple of ways. First, some dealers offer fixed spreads. The industry term for this practice is “consistent spreads.” Fixed, or consistent, spreads are wider than the spread these dealers pay the banks they are using as a broker and represents a major portion of their revenue. Alternatively, a dealer may offer a variable spread to you the retail customer, which is usually narrower than a consistent spread but may widen considerably when market volatility increases.

When you make a trade with your dealer, they are in turn offsetting that risk through their prime brokerage accounts. For example, if you enter a trade long the EUR/USD, your dealer does not want to be remain short that position as the seller of that lot. Their business is providing liquidity not taking positions. They will offset their customer’s positions by trading an opposite position with another participant in the interbank. The actual process can be quite complicated with so many orders coming and going but that is how they manage their risk.

Retail customers—This is you. The retail customer has access to the forex through his/her dealer. Although they are one level removed from the primary interbank market, it is not usually a disadvantage for the retail trader.



The Supply and Demand Theory in Forex

Forex Supply and Demand

Supply and demand drives the forex market

The Forex market, just like every other market in the world, is driven by supply and demand. In fact, understanding the concept of supply and demand is so important in the Forex market that we are going to take a step back into Economics 101 for a moment to make sure we’re all on the same page.

Having a good grasp on supply and demand will make all of the difference in your Forex investing career because it will give you the ability to sift through the mountain of news that is produced every day and find those messages that are most important.

Supply is the measure of how much of a particular commodity is available at any one time. As the supply of a currency increases, the currency becomes less valuable. Conversely, as the supply of a currency decreases, the currency becomes more valuable.

Think about rocks and diamonds. Rocks aren’t very valuable because they are everywhere. There is a large supply of rocks in the world. You can literally walk down the street and have your choice of hundreds and thousands of different rocks. Diamonds, on the other hand, are expensive because there aren’t that many of them in circulation. There is a small supply of diamonds in the world, and you have to pay a premium if you want one. It’s a crude analogy, but the point is made.


On the other side of the economic equation, we find demand. Demand is the measure of how much of a particular commodity people want at any one time. Demand for a currency has the opposite effect on the value of a currency than does supply. As the demand for a currency increases, the currency becomes more valuable. Conversely, as the demand for a currency decreases, the currency becomes less valuable.

Japan as an illustration

Take oil prices for example. When demand for oil goes up or the supply of oil drops off, oil prices go up. As oil prices go up, gasoline and natural gas prices go up. As gasoline and natural gas prices go up, you end up spending more to drive around town and to heat your home. And as you spend more and more on oil-based products, your budget gets leaner and leaner. Well, these same factors that affect your budget affect the budgets of the world’s largest corporations and governments.

One country that suffers from rising oil prices just like you do is Japan. Japan imports nearly 100 percent of its oil. It doesn’t have much of a choice. Japan isn’t known for its booming oil reserves. So any oil Japan wants to use to produce electronics, cars, and other goods, it must buy it at whatever the going rate is. But that’s just the beginning. Japan’s economy relies on its ability to export the goods it creates to other countries, like the United States. As you’ve noticed driving around town, it costs a lot of money to transport your groceries, your kids, and yourself from one place to another. It costs even more when you have to ship your goods across the Pacific Ocean. Every car, DVD player, and computer Japan produces is becoming more and more expensive to ship to consumers. So when you look at it, Japan is getting hit on both sides. It has to import all of its oil at inflated prices, and then it has to turn around and pay inflated prices to ship all of its goods.

So what impact does all of this have on Japanese goods? It makes them more expensive. If Japanese companies have to pay more to produce their products and then have to pay more to distribute their products, they are going to have to charge more for their products to cover their expenses and make a profit. As products become more and more expensive, consumers are able to buy less and less. And as consumers buy less, companies make less, which leads to all sorts of economically negative outcomes. Now, let’s take a step back now and look at what all of this has to do with the exchange rate of the Japanese yen.

Looking through the lens of supply and demand, you can see how an increase in the price of oil would affect the value of the Japanese yen. Oil is priced and sold in U.S. dollars. As oil becomes more expensive, purchasers in Japan have to convert more and more of their Japanese yen into U.S. dollars so they could pay for their oil. This would increase the supply of Japanese yen in the Forex market and subsequently lower the value of the Japanese yen. To compound the problem, as Japanese goods become more expensive and fewer and fewer people can afford to buy them, demand for Japanese yen falls. The fewer products you buy, the fewer Japanese yen you need. And when you don’t need something, you stop demanding it. Rising supply plus falling demand equal a decrease in the value of the Japanese yen.

The price of oil and its effect on the Japanese yen is just one example of how supply and demand impacts the Forex market. We will be looking at many other fundamental factors that influence the Forex market in the coming lessons. But the important thing now is that you feel comfortable with the concept of supply and demand.

Always be thinking Supply and Demand in your analysis

Every time you analyze the Forex market, all you have to do is ask yourself how supply and demand are going to be affected by what is going on. This holds true for both fundamental and technical analysis—the two major disciplines in the Forex market and every other market, for that matter.

Fundamental analysis is the study of what is happening in the world around us. Everything we have discussed so far in this book and will continue to discuss, from oil prices to stock market performance, relates to fundamental analysis.

Technical analysis is the study of what is happening on the chart of a particular currency pair. We will be discussing a few basic tenets of this investment art in a later lesson.

But both forms of analysis are built upon a foundation of supply and demand, so get ready to ask yourself supply-and-demand-related questions a lot. We’ll now look at more illustrations and examples in the video.

Forex Computers

The Forex Introduction

The Forex market is the largest financial market in the world. More than $3 trillion in foreign currencies trade back and forth every day. Forex stands for the FOReign EXchange—the financial exchange on which governments, banks, international corporations, hedge funds and individual investors exchange foreign currencies.

How does the forex work?

When you fly to another country, one of the first things you do when you get off the plane is look for a place you can exchange your U.S. dollars for whatever currency is used in the country you are visiting—such as British pounds, Japanese yen or euros.

Why do you do this? Because you know the cab driver, the hotel clerk and the souvenir salesperson are all going to want you to pay them in their national currency, not U.S. dollars.

When you slide your U.S. dollars over to the teller and she slides back a stack of multi-colored bills (let’s face it, most currencies have more color than the greenback) you have just participated in the Forex market. You exchanged one currency for another.

Now, if you stop and think about all of the people who travel, all of the businesses that operate in multiple countries and all of the governments that are exchanging money, you can start to get an idea of how big the Forex market really is.

For those of you who travel abroad frequently, you have probably also noticed that the exchange rates at the currency counter at the airport never seem to be the same. They are constantly changing. It is those changes in exchange rates that enable you to make money in the Forex market.

Basic Lesson: Know your Forex terms

Before we delve any deeper into the exciting possibilities that exist in the Forex market, we need to get you up to speed on the lingo in the Forex market. Now, don’t worry. As far as vocabulary lessons go, this one is quite a lot of fun. Honestly! It’s a very short lesson:

Pip: While some of you may recognize “Pip” as a character in Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations, we hope you will become more intimately acquainted with the pips in the Forex market—because you will be using them to determine your profits and losses. A pip (percentage in point) or point, is the smallest unit of measurement in the Forex market. Most currency pair quotes are carried out four decimal places—i.e. 1.4500. The last decimal place is called a pip. So if the exchange rate of a currency pair moved from 1.4500 to 1.4510, we would say that the price moved up 10 pips. You make money when the pips move your way in a trade.

There is an exception: Any exchange rate that contains the Japanese yen or the Thai baht as one of the currencies will only be carried out two decimal places. If you want to know why that is, you will have to take it up with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). Honestly, there is such an organization. It is located in Geneva, Switzerland, and you would be amazed at the fields it impacts—from health care and electrical engineering to ship building and metallurgy. Anyway, they set the rules.

Currency Pair: We wouldn’t have a Forex market if we weren’t able to compare the value of one currency against the value of another currency. It is this comparison that drives prices. Forex contracts are always quoted in pairs. The euro vs. the U.S. dollar (EUR/USD) is the most heavily traded currency pair. The U.S. dollar vs. the Japanese yen (USD/JPY) is another popular pair.

The following is a list of the most common currency pairs, their trading symbols and their nicknames:


Understanding Pairs and Price Quotes

One distinction you do need to make when looking at a currency pair is which currency is the base currency and which currency is the quote currency. The base currency is the first currency listed in the pairing. For example, the base currency in the EUR/USD pair is the euro because it is listed first.

The base currency is important because it is the strength or weakness of this currency that is illustrated on the chart. For example, as the chart of the EUR/USD moves higher, it means the value of the euro is getting stonger as compared to the U.S. dollar.

image 4

As the chart of the EUR/USD moves lower, it means the value of the euro in relation to the U.S. dollar is getting weaker.

image 5

The same principle applies to the USD/JPY pair or any other currency pair. The U.S. dollar is the base currency in the USD/JPY pair. So as the chart of the USD/JPY moves higher, it means the value of the U.S. dollar in relation to the Japanese yen is getting stronger. And as the chart of the USD/JPY moves lower, it means the value of the U.S. dollar in relation to the Japanese yen is getting weaker.

image 6

The quote currency is the second currency listed in the pairing. For example, the quote currency in the GBP/USD pair is the U.S. dollar because it is listed second. The quote currency is important because it is the currency in which the exchange rate is quoted.

To illustrate, when you say the exchange rate between the British Pound and the U.S. dollar is 1.7533, you are saying it costs $1.7533 to purchase ₤1. The same principle applies to the USD/CHF pair or any other currency pair. The Swiss franc is the quote currency in the USD/CHF pair. So when you say the exchange rate between the U.S. dollar and the Swiss franc is 1.2468, you are saying it costs 1.2468 Swiss francs to purchase $1.

Currencies are sold in lots

In the stock market, when you want to buy something, you buy a share of stock, or a share of that company. In the Forex market, when you want to buy something, you buy a contract, or a lot. (We use the term contract because the Forex market utilizes currency futures contracts). There is no way to buy a share of the U.S. dollar like you would buy a share of Google in the stock market. When you trade in the Forex market, you are trading lots or contracts.

Contracts are divided into three categories: full-size contracts, mini contracts and flexible contracts.

Full-Size Contracts control 100,000 units of whatever the base currency in the currency pair is. So for instance, if you were to buy one full-size contract on the EUR/USD, you would control €100,000 because the euro is the base currency in the pair.

Mini-Contracts control 10,000 units of whatever the base currency in the currency pair is. As you can see, a mini contract is one-tenth the size of a full-size contract.

Flexible Contracts allow you to choose the exact amount of a currency you would like to control. If you want to control 84,392 units or 2,755 units of the currency you are interested in, you can with a flexible contract.

Being able to choose among full-size, mini and flexible contracts allows you to tailor your investing to best meet your investment style and strategy.

Make sure to take the time to feel comfortable with the lingo of the Forex market. If you have a solid foundation of knowledge, you’ll be much better off in your investing. So now that you’ve got the basics, let’s watch the video and take a look at what makes the Forex market tick, how it came to be, and how you can use it to protect and multiply your money.


The 11 winning rules of betting

#1 Don’t Bet More Than You Can Afford To Lose
It’s the simplest of advices and the most pertinent to any punter. Betting can be approached as another form of entertainment that you spend your money on. You’d never book a £200 per night hotel room, when you could only afford a £100 one, and so you should approach betting with this one governing factor always to the fore. Bet within your means.

#2 Don’t Increase Your Stake After Winning
Unless you are adopting a specific betting method or staking plan, never arbitrarily increase your stake just because you’ve won. Betting shop mugs do this all the time and with very few exceptions their money will only go one way – back to the bookie.

#3 Treat Your Betting As a Business – Your Bookie Does
Businesses can increase profit by minimizing losses and outlay. Your bookie does this, and so should you. The one thing you are guaranteed to do when betting is back a loser. Finding ways to cut down on the losers will greatly affect your potential to make profit.

#4 Don’t Follow The Money
Unless you are in on a gamble right at the start, by the time you get to know where the money’s going all the best prices will be gone. If you dive in at that stage you could very likely be betting at no value or even negative value (the price is shorter than the selection’s actual chances).

#5 Use A Betting Bank
If you’re just betting from what available cash you have in your pocket at any given time you are unlikely to have much control over your betting. Lack of control is one of the quickest ways to get skint. A betting bank lets you know how much you have to bet with, helps you control stakes, and more importantly can let you see whether you are winning or not (in conjuction with #7 and #8 also)

#6 Use A Staking Plan
Using a Staking Plan is a great way to control your betting. Used in conjunction with #6 and #7 (Betting Bank and Recording Bets) this will help you become a smarter punter, one who is control of his/her betting. It won’t guarantee to make you a profit but it should help you in one respect – to cut down on those silly unnecessary bets. Level Stakes is the most popular Staking Plan and a very sensible one too, but there are others. Bank Percentage Plan, Sequence Plan, and others.

#7 Specialize In Just A Few Sports
Bookies will have you betting on everything from the US Election to the X-Factor. One of the reasons they offer so much is because it’s profitable to them. One of the punter’s best tactics is to specialize. Most of us know a varied amount about one or two sports, so when it comes to betting a major plus is to do the research and become more expert in just a few sports. That can give you an edge the bookies don’t have, simply because their oddsmakers have to cover everything. By specialising you gain an advantage, and can better spot potentially good bets.

#8 Don’t Panic In A Losing Streak
As stated previously you are guaranteed to back losers, but what happens when you start to back loser after loser? It’s at this point that the novice or undisciplined punter can start to panic, to question their methods, to start changing methods, and start chasing losses. All of these you must avoid. If you’re organized, have confidence in your methods, and you have a properly sized betting bank to allow for a losing streak, stick with the plan. Stay calm and don’t waiver from your methods. The dreaded losing run is all too familiar to all of us. It’s a part of betting. [**caveat – methods of course can be changed under the correct circumstances, just not under the panic of a losing streak because you’re not best placed to make the right judgements]

#9 Don’t Chase Losses
This can be read in conjunction with #12 Don’t Panic In A Losing Streak. Chasing losses is one of the main contributions to losing made by punters. When the main bet or bets of the day go down, some punters can’t accept a losing day and so go off in search of winners, despite the fact that their earlier studies dismissed the remainder for having the potential for winners. Or a punter bets money he/she couldn’t really afford to lose, then go off in a futile attempt to recoup the loss, and thereby losing more. Know when to walk away and call it a day.

#10 Don’t Look For A Bet, Wait For One
You don’t have to have a bet. Sure, we all like the thrill of a bet and watching its progress, but the punters who tend to lose more are the ones who can’t resist having that thrill, and therefore go repeatedly looking for a bet they wouldn’t normally have done. You’ll see them in betting shops all the time, moving from one race to the next, taking only the few precious seconds there now are between races to try to find a selection. The disciplined punter will have his methods, and if those methods don’t pinpoint a bet on a particular day they won’t go looking for one – they’ll do the right thing and wait till the next day.

#11 Singles Offer The Best Profit Potential
This is one of the obvious ones to the more experienced punter, but to the novice or to those lured in by the ‘bonuses’ and ‘enhancements’ of the ‘big-money’ bets that the bookies keep pushing to your attention (there’s a reason why they keep advertising these bets), it may not be so obvious.

You won’t win big-money with singles, that’s true. But let’s face it how many of you out there have won big-money with multiple bets? With singles you don’t face the furstrating situation where you can lose it. With singles, you don’t get a winner only to have wait on having another winner to have it pay off for you.

Bookies don’t like you betting singles, that’s why you’ll rarely see them advertising them. Singles allows you to shop around for the best price and give yourself the best chance of profit. Multiple bets are for the dreamers.



Spread betting trading : Emotions and IQ

Contrary to what most novice traders believe, success in trading or financial spread betting is not down to your understanding of winning strategies, trading systems or even money management techniques. Of course, all these enhance your chances. However, most successful traders agree on one basic premise. The single most important element of successful trading or spread betting is the mental or emotional aspect. Unfortunately, this element is usually the last to crop up in the mind of the novice trader or spread better and as such it is usually the last to receive any attention.

If there is anything that we hope to pass on to you on this website, it is this: true mastery of financial spread betting will only come once you have mastered what I refer to as spread betting emotions and the attendant emotional response to the markets.

Notice that we wrote “emotional response”. This is because no single trader or spread better has any control over the markets. The only control we have is over ourselves and our decisions. As we conduct our analysis, the best that we can hope for is that we interpret correctly what the data is saying. As professional traders say, the market has a mind of its own and it will do what it wants. While our analysis may turn out to be correct or wrong, the real determinant of whether or not we end up winners or losers is our emotional or mental reaction to the result of our position in the market. How you deal with your spread betting emotions is crucial to your success.

Consider for instance that unlike with most other activities, in trading as in financial spread betting there is really no starting or ending point. The wheel is in constant motion and you decide when to get on and when to get off again. Either way, the party goes on. This presents a number of challenges for novice traders and the professionals alike. Spread betting emotions often lead to over trading for this reason.

Even after conducting analysis, where does the novice spread better find the initial confidence to pull the trigger especially when faced with all sorts of contradictory spread betting emotions?

• Good times may be easy to deal with but, how do you deal with the emotional drain of down times without digging yourself deeper into the loser’s hole?

• If you find yourself in a bad trade, how do you work your way back out? Quite often, the best option is to cut your loses and get out of the trade asap. But try telling the novice spread better that a small loss may well be the best way to learn an important trading lesson. Bottom line is that this is emotionally difficult to accept.

• How do experienced traders push through the ceiling of profitability that caps their initial trading years and make a truly fabulous living?

Trading and financial spread betting are performance-oriented activities. Stress and mental pressures can inhibit your ability to function effectively with potentially nasty implications for your bottom line.

Here are a number of important points to note as you develop a winning mental attitude to financial spread betting:

• Intellect (at least in the academic sense) has nothing to do with your ability as a spread better. Success is not a function of how smart you are or how high your IQ is. This is hard to accept for most people.

• No matter how long you have been spread betting, there is no customer or client goodwill built up each day in your business. Each day is a clean slate. Try and maintain a sharp focus during the trading day. Just as importantly, make sure you take time out of the market every now and again to recharge your batteries. The market can be mentally draining and spread betting emotions can often run high—even for the most experienced players.

• Success in financial spread betting is not a factor of how much effort you put in. Simply put, the traditionally 9-5 work ethic doesn’t apply in this business! A trader could sit in front of a screen all day waiting for a trading opportunity and have nothing happen. Patience is crucial. There is a temptation—often driven by what I like to refer to as spread betting emotions—to take marginal trades just so you feel like you are doing something. Do not fall into this trap. Spread bet only when there is a clear money making opportunity.

Financial Glossary

Financial Glossary

Austrian Futures and Options Exchange

Bear market
A market distinguished by declining prices.

Bet size
Governs how much you make or lose on a spread bet for every point of movement in the price of the market.

A spread betting price is made up of a level at which you can ‘sell’ and a level at which you can ‘buy’. The level at which you can ‘sell’ is always the lower of the two prices and is called the bid.

Binary bet
A special form of spread bet with only two outcomes at expiry – if a specific result is achieved (for example, the FTSE® to finish up at the end of the trading day) the bet is closed at a level of 100. If the result is not achieved, the bet closes at 0. Binary bets therefore have something in common with a traditional fixed-odds bet, except that we make a continuous price for the binary, between 0 and 100, allowing you to close your bet out before the final settlement to cut your losses or take your profit early.

Bonds (or government bonds)
Essentially an IOU issued by a borrower to a lender. Bonds are usually fixed-interest securities issued by governments, but can come in a variety of different forms. With a fixed-interest bond, the borrower normally makes interest payments on specified dates, often twice-yearly.

Break even
The break-even is the value on expiry at which no profit is realised on an option position. A 5300 FTSE® call bought at 14 means you will have a break even of 5314 (5300 + 14).

Similarly, a 5300 FTSE® put bought at 16 has a break even at 5284 (5300 – 16), as the market has to fall for the put to make money.

Broker ratings
‘Buy’, ‘sell’, or hold recommendations or ratings given to individual company stocks by securities analysts, depending on how they think the stock will perform in the short- or long-term.

Bull market
A market distinguished by rising prices.

Buy (also see up bet)
You ‘buy’ a market if you think it will rise (if you are opening a new bet). You also ‘buy’ to close out an existing ‘sell’ bet.

Trader jargon referring to the sterling/US dollar exchange rate. So called because the rate was originally transmitted between the London and New York exchanges via the transatlantic telegraph cable beginning in the
mid 1800s.

A call is a type of option granting the right to ‘buy’ at a fixed price, known as the strike.

Carry trade
An investor ‘sells’ a certain currency with a low interest rate and uses the funds to purchase a different currency at a higher interest rate, thus capturing the difference – or profit – between the two rates

Cash price (also see spot rate)
The price of an asset for immediate delivery. In other words, the actual price of an instrument right now; this term is often used for stock indices, whereas the synonymous term of spot is more often applied to forex and
commodity prices.

Chicago Board of Trade

Central bank
A government or quasi-governmental organisation that manages a country’s monetary policy. For example, the US central bank is the Federal Reserve, and the German central bank is the Bundesbank.

Visual representations of raw data. Investors can learn to spot recurring patterns in financial charts to help them make informed decisions on a market or a company.

The process of ending an existing bet. Closing a bet results in a profit or loss being realised.

A basic good used in commerce which is usually uniform across producers and can be traded on an exchange. Soft commodities are goods that are grown, such as coffee and sugar, while hard commodities are extracted through mining, such as gold and coal.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

Commodity Exchange Inc, New York

Controlled risk bet
A bet which has a strictly limited maximum loss by virtue of a
guaranteed stop.

Crude oil (and/or WTI)
The unrefined state of petroleum, crude oil is one of the world’s most important and well-traded markets. WTI or West Texas Intermediate is a type of low sulphur crude oil or sweet crude, used as an oil benchmark
or marker.

Coffee, Sugar and Cocoa Exchange

Currency Pair
The two currencies that comprise a forex rate. A forex rate is the amount that the first currency in the pair is worth expressed in terms of the
second currency.


Daily Funded Bet (DFB)
A long-term bet on the cash price of an underlying instrument. Each day your bet remains open, we make a cash adjustment to your account to reflect the funding costs of your bet. We will also make dividend adjustments when applicable.

Dealing spread
Difference between the two ends of our quoted price. You make an up bet (‘buy’) at the higher end of the spread and make a down bet (‘sell’) at the lower end of the spread.
The funds required as an initial outlay for a bet. It is not the total amount that can be lost on the bet.
A fall in the value of an asset.
A financial instrument, the value of which is derived from an underlying commodity, currency, economic variable or other financial instrument.
The amount by which a price for one instrument is less than that of another instrument. The term is also used in forex markets to describe the amount by which forward currency rates are less than spot rates.
The part of a company’s profits distributed to shareholders, usually on a regular basis. An interim dividend is paid at the half-year stage and a final dividend at the end of the full year.
Down bet (also see ‘sell’)
A bet backing a particular price to fall.
A price trend characterised by a series of lower highs and lower lows.
Economic indicator
A government issued statistic that indicates current economic growth and stability. Common indicators include employment rates, gross domestic product (GDP), inflation, retail sales, etc.
European Exchange, Frankfurt
European Central Bank (ECB)
The central bank for the new European Monetary Union.
A share bought without the right to receive the next dividend which is retained by the seller.
The date and time at which a bet will automatically close against some predefined market value should the bet remain open beyond its last
dealing time.
Federal Reserve (FED)
The central banking system for the United States.
The execution of an order.
Financial spread betting
Betting on the price movement of a financial instrument, such as shares, currencies and indices. Two prices are quoted – the bid and offer price – the difference between which is the spread. The bet is on whether the future price of the instrument will be higher than the offer price or lower than the bid price.
Financial Instrument Exchange, New York
Fiscal policy
The use of government spending and taxation to influence
macroeconomic conditions.
Fixed income
When an investment yields a regular or fixed return.
Foreign exchange (forex, FX, currency)
The simultaneous ‘buying’ of one currency and ‘selling’ of another.
The FTSE® 100, 250 and 350 are the best-known stock indices in the UK and are used primarily to bench mark the performance of UK companies by market capitalisation. The constituent companies within each index are calculated quarterly. Informally known as the ‘footsie’, the indices are maintained by FTSE® Group, which is jointly owned by the Financial Times and the London Stock Exchange.
Fundamental research
Can be the analysis of companies or the economy. With the former such factors taken into account are sales, earnings, products or services, markets and management. With the latter fundamental research considers such things like GDP, interest rates and unemployment. In financial trading, this differs from technical research, which uses past prices and trading to predict future prices.
Future or forwards
A future or forwards rate is notionally an agreement to conduct a transaction at some specified time in the future where the price is agreed now. For a spread bet it means that the expiry date is at some point in the future (cf. daily funded bets). Often the price of a future or forwards bet will differ from the cash price.
The phenomenon of a market trading at a price away from the previous traded price without trades occurring at intervening prices: more usually, but not necessarily, relates to when a market resumes trading after a period
of closure.
Gearing (also see leverage)
The relationship between potential profit or loss and the initial outlay. A position with high gearing or leverage stands to make or lose a large amount from a small initial outlay. With us, the initial outlay is normally the deposit for the bet.
A sought-after precious metal which has universal price in the global market place. A procedure known as gold fixing in London provides a daily benchmark to the industry.
Gross domestic product (GDP)
One of the measures of national income and output for a country’s economy; the total value of all final goods and services produced by
the economy.
Guaranteed stop
A stop-loss order that puts an absolute limit on your liability, eliminating the chance of slippage and guaranteeing an exit price for your trade.

A trade or position that reduces or eliminates the risk of loss from an adverse price movement in a position already held.

Hong Kong Futures Exchange
Illiquid market
In an illiquid market, a small amount of business often moves prices by a disproportionate amount, and bid and offer prices can be far apart.
Interbank rates
Foreign exchange rates at which large international banks quote other large international banks.
Interest rate futures
Interest rate futures allow you to take a view on all the main interest rate contracts, including short sterling, gilt, bund, eurodollar, JGB and t-bond. With short-term interest rate contracts, you can bet on the direction of a country’s three-month interest rates. This means that if you think short-term interest rates will fall, you ‘buy’. You ‘sell’ if you think rates will rise.
International Petroleum Exchange, London
Last dealing day
The last day on which you may deal in a particular market, for opening or closing trades. This may or may not coincide with the settlement date
for a bet.
Last dealing time
The last time (on the last dealing day) you may bet on a particular market.
Leverage (also see gearing)
Leverage or gearing allows traders to gain a large exposure with a relatively small outlay.
London International Financial Futures Exchange
Limit order
An instruction to deal if the price moves to a more favourable level (eg to ‘buy’ if the price goes down to a specified level).
Limited risk
A bet which has a strictly limited maximum loss.
Liquid market
A liquid market has a sufficient volume of two-way business for a trade to occur without moving prices unduly. The market will normally exhibit narrow bid-offer spreads.
London Metal Exchange
Long position
A position taken in anticipation of a rising market. To go long means to ‘buy’.
London Stock Exchange
The amount required from a client – in addition to any deposit due – to cover losses when a price moves adversely. Sometimes called
‘variation margin’.
Market order
An order that you use to specify the direction and size of a bet, but not the price. This ensures we will fill your order as quickly as possible, even if the price indicated on the deal ticket is not available for your requested order size.

Monetary policy

The procedures by which a government or central bank seeks to affect macroeconomic conditions by influencing the supply and availability
of money.
Milan Stock Exchange
New York Cotton Exchange
New York Futures Exchange
New York Mercantile Exchange

A spread betting price is made up of a level at which you can ‘sell’ and a level at which you can ‘buy’. The level at which you can ‘buy’ is always the higher of the two prices and is called the offer.

London Securities and Derivatives Exchange
A type of derivative which confers the right but not the obligation to ‘buy’ or ‘sell’ some underlying asset at a specified price before a specified date. We offer bets on options and we also provide a detailed introduction to options in the client area of our website.
Orders to open
An instruction to open a new bet should a specified price be reached.
Osaka Securities Exchange
A ‘percentage in point’ is generally, though not always, the fourth decimal place, i.e. 0.0001. Traditionally, a pip was the smallest point by which a forex rate could move; with modern advances in precision this is no longer the case, though.
The increment in price movement that results in you making or losing your bet size.
Abbreviation of profit and loss: how much you have made or lost.
A bet that you have running.
Precious metals
Naturally occurring metallic elements of high economic value. These include gold, silver and palladium.
The term ‘premium’ refers simply to the price of an option or the net cost of a particular options strategy such as a Straddle or Strangle.
A put is a type of option, granting the right to ‘sell’ at a fixed price
(the strike).
The two-way market price that we are making for a given instrument; because it is two-way, you can ‘buy’ or ‘sell’, according to whether you think the price will rise or fall.
Quarterly bets
A type of future with periodic expiries spaced three months apart. Prices are normally quoted for the next two or three quarter months.
Realised profit/loss
The amount of money you have made or lost on a bet once the bet has been closed. Realised profit or loss will add or subtract from your
cash balance.
A term used in technical analysis indicating a price level at which analysis suggests a predominance of selling – and hence a greater likelihood that the price will fail to break through the level.
Exposure to uncertain change, most often used with a negative connotation of adverse change.
Risk management
If you are new to spread betting it is possible to make substantial losses as well as substantial profits. With us, you can manage your risks via controlled risk bets, making it possible to put an absolute limit on potential losses. We also offer non-guaranteed stops and limit orders to open and close
betting positions.
The procedure whereby a bet approaching expiry is closed and a bet of the same size and direction is opened for the next period, thereby prolonging the exposure to a particular market.
Running profit/loss
How your open bets are doing: the unrealised money that you would gain or lose on your open bets if they were closed at prevailing market prices.

South African Futures Exchange

The name for a group of securities or companies in the same market
or industry.
You ‘sell’ a market if you think it will fall (if you are opening a new bet). You also ‘sell’ to close out an existing ‘buy’ bet.
Settlement (also see expiry)
The process of a bet closing against a specified market level once the bet has gone beyond its last dealing time.
Sydney Futures Exchange
A unit of ownership, usually in a corporation, that entitles the owner to a share of profits in the form of a dividend.
Short position
A position taken in anticipation of a falling market. To go short means
to ‘sell’.
Singapore Exchange
The difference between the level of a stop order and the actual price at which it was executed. Can occur during periods of higher volatility when market prices move rapidly or gap.
Swiss Options and Financial Futures Exchange
Spot (also see cash price)
The price for a currency, index, commodity or share for immediate settlement or delivery.
Spread (aka bid/offer spread)
The difference between the ‘buying’ and ‘selling’ price for a particular bet.
Spread bet
A bet on whether a financial market (the underlying market) will rise or fall. We offer two prices on every market; the difference is known as the bid/offer spread. If you think a market is set to rise you ‘buy’ at the higher (or offer) price, and if you think it will fall you ‘sell’ at the lower (bid) price. Whether you gain or lose money on the bet – and how much – depends on the size/direction of any movement in the underlying market.
Standard order type
For a standard order with us, you select the direction, size and quoted price you want the order to be filled at. Standard orders are rejected unless they can be executed at the price you asked for or better.
Stock index
A compilation of a number of stocks into one total price, expressed against some base value from a specific date, thus allowing investors to easily follow the performance of certain groups of stocks.
Stop order
An instruction to deal if the price becomes less favourable; normally placed to prevent a loss of more than a certain amount of money.
In options betting, a straddle is a combination of a call and put of the same strike price. Someone who has bought a straddle has bought ‘volatility’ and so is backing a relatively significant move in the underlying asset. Conversely, someone who sells a straddle is betting that a significant move in the value of the underlying will not happen.
A strangle is a strategy in options betting, where you hold a position in both a call and put with the same expiry but different strike prices.
Strike price
All options have a strike. The strike is the price at which the holder of the option can ‘buy’ or ‘sell’ the underlying. Calls allow the holder to effectively go long, or at which puts allow their holder to go short.
Support level
A technique used in technical analysis to indicate a price floor at which you would expect the price to ‘bounce’ off. Opposite of this is resistance.
Technical analysis
An effort to forecast prices by analysing market data, ie historical price trends and averages, volumes, open interest, etc.
Trailing stops
Special types of stop orders that move automatically when the market moves in your favour, helping you lock in gains while your position is open.
Our six-week comprehensive free course to help you learn spread betting; members can avail of special minimum bet sizes starting at just 10 pence per point.
Tokyo Stock Exchange
The actual traded market or markets from which the price of a spread bet
is derived.
Up bet (also see ‘buy’)
A bet backing a particular price to rise.
A statistical measure of a market’s price movements over time.
Working an order
The process of having an order that has not yet been executed.
Spread Betting Risk Management

Spread Betting Risk Management

What are the risks?

Unlike most traditional financial dealing services, spread betting is a leveraged product. This means that your initial deposit payment gives you exposure to a comparatively larger portion of an underlying market than if you bought the instrument directly (via a stockbroker, for example).

This means that spread betting can result in losses that exceed your initial deposit. And without good risk management, it becomes possible to make significant losses over a short period of time. It is therefore important to understand risk and learn how to manage your portfolio effectively.

How do I manage risk?

    1. Understand your market

      Before dealing, it is important to understand the market on which you are taking a position. Knowing the potential for each market to experience volatility and establishing the likelihood of sharp price movements is essential when considering the risk associated with each bet. For example, historically some markets are less likely to make sudden discontinuous jumps, while others, such as shares (which can be subject to profit warnings and the like), may be more likely to make abrupt movements.

    2. Monitor your open positions
      An equally important risk management strategy is simply to closely monitor your open positions. This is particularly relevant if you have not attached a stop-loss. Volatile markets can move hundreds of points in minutes, and while a good understanding of your market may help pre-empt extreme fluctuations, there is no substitute for actively monitoring your account.

    3. Use stop and limit orders
      There will inevitably be times when it is impossible to keep an eye on your open positions. This is why we offer a range of order types to help you manage risk without capping your potential for profit.
Asian Handicap

What is Asian Handicap

Asian Handicap betting (named so simply because of its Eastern origins) is a form of betting on football that has gained popularity over the years. The handicaps typically range from one quarter goal to several goals and can be described in terms of half or even quarter goals.

Most importantly, Asian Handicap betting reduces the possible number of outcomes from three (in traditional 1X2 wagering) to two by eliminating the draw outcome. This simplification delivers two betting options that each have a near 50% chance of success.

Asian Handicaps are both good and bad for bookmakers. On one hand, they help bookmakers minimize risk by facilitating trading with parity or balancing the amount of wagering on each side of the match. This enables bookmakers to take larger positions on major matches. On the other hand, Asian Handicap markets are typically low margin offerings that do not contribute as significantly to the gross win as other, higher vigorish betting options like 1X2.

The term “Asian Handicap” was coined by journalist Joe Saumarez Smith in November 1998. He was asked by an Indonesia bookmaker, Joe Phan, to provide a translation of the betting method that was termed ‘hang cheng betting’ by bookmakers in Asia.

Football (soccer) is one of the few sports in the world where a tie is a fairly common outcome. With traditional fixed odds, ties are treated as an additional outcome to the game. In other words, bettors lose when they place a wager on either team to win and the game ties. With Asian Handicaps, however, the chance for a tie is eliminated by use of a handicap that forces a winner. This creates a situation where each team has a 50-50 chance of winning; similar to the odds for a basketball or football spread handicap typically offered by Las Vegas sportsbooks.

This system works in a straightforward manner. The bookmakers’s goal is to create a handicap or “line” that will make the chance of either team winning (considering the handicap) as close to 50% as possible. Since the odds are as close to 50% as possible, bookmakers offer payouts close to even money, or 1.90 to 2.00. Asian Handicaps start at a quarter goal and can go as high as 2.5 or 3 goals in matches with a huge disparity in ability. What makes Asian Handicaps most interesting is the use of quarter goals to get the “line” as close as possible. Taken in conjunction with the posted total for the game, the handicap essentially predicts the game’s final score.

Subsequently, many matches are handicapped in ½ and ¼ intervals; both of which eliminate the possibility of a push since no one can score a half-goal. Quarter (¼) handicaps split the bet between the two next closest ¼ intervals. For instance, a $1000 bet with a handicap of 1 ¾ is the same as betting $500 at 1 ½ and $500 at 2. With ¼ handicap bets, you can win and tie (win ½ of wager) or lose and tie (lose ½ wager). The ¼-goal handicap may be expressed by some bookmakers as “0 and ½”, or (especially for bookmakers whose systems are designed for sports like American football and basketball (where bets have a handicap that is designed to make the odds as close to even as possible)) as “pk (for “pick-em”) and ½”.


Asian Handicap Examples

Asian handicap 0:0 (Level ball – Draw no bet – DNB)

Here the game starts 0-0. No advance is given to any team. Draw option is eliminated.

Example : Chelsea vs Liverpool AH – 0:0

Home Odds – 1.90 , Away Odds – 1.95

* You bet 100$ on Chelsea to win 0:0 AH at 1.90 odds. To win your coupon, you need Chelsea to win the game, simply to win. If Chelsea wins, you win 100$ X 1.90 = 190$. Your profit is 190$ – 100 = 90$. If a possible draw occurs, you get your stake (100$) back. No wager, no bet. If Chelsea loses the game, you lose your bet too.

* It is the same with Liverpool 0:0 AH. You need Liverpool to win the game, and if a draw occurs, you get your money back. No Wager, no bet. If Liverpool loses, you lose your bet too.

You may see some bookies offer something like DNB, Draw no bet, or Level ball. It is the same with 0:0 AH.

Asian handicap 0.25

Here the game starts 0-1/4. The underdog team is advanced with a quarter goal before the kick off. Draw option is eliminated. It is more complicated from half AH. You win, win half, lose or lose half stake of your bet. Lets examine it by the example below.

Example : Monaco vs Lyon AH – 0:1/4

Home Odds – 2.00 , Away Odds – 1.90

* You bet 100$ on Monaco to win -1/4 AH. To win your coupon, you need Monaco to win the game. If Monaco wins, you win 100$ X 2.00 = 200$. It means you make 200$ – 100$ = 100$ profit. If a draw occurs, you lose half of your stake (50$) and the other half (50$) is back. If Lyon wins the game, you lose your all stake.

* You bet 100$ on Lyon to win +1/4 AH. To win your coupon, you need Lyon to win the game. If Lyon wins the game, you win 100$ X 1.90 = 190$. It means you make 190$ – 100$ = 90$ profit. If a draw occurs, you get half of your stake (50$) back and win the other half (50$) at 1.90. It means, you win 50$ (back) + 95$ (50$ X 1.90) = 145$. Your profit is 145$ – 100$ = 45$.

Asian handicap 0.5

Here the game starts 0-1/2. The underdog team is advanced with a half goal before the kick off. Draw option is eliminated. In addition, there is no money back in any case. You will win or lose your money.

Example : Porto vs Benfica AH – 0:1/2

Home Odds – 1.85 , Away Odds – 2.00

* You bet 100$ on Porto to win -1/2 AH (we use minus (-) if the team is favored by AH). To win your coupon, you need Porto to win. In any other cases, you lose your money. If Porto wins, you win 100$ X 1.85 = 185$. It means you make 185$ – 100$ = 85$ profit. If Benfica wins or the game ends tie, you lose your money.

* You bet 100$ on Benfica to win +1/2 AH (we use plus (+) if the team is advanced by AH). To win your coupon, you need Benfica to win or tie the game at the end of 90 minute-time. If one of these occurs, you win 100$ X 2.00 = 200$. It means you make 200$ – 100$ = 100$ profit. If Porto wins the game, you lose your money.

Porto wins and Porto -1/2 AH is the same things in Asian handicap betting.

Asian handicap 0.75

Here the game starts 0-3/4. The underdog team is advanced with a quarter goal before the kick off. Draw option is eliminated. It is different from 1/4 AH by a slight exception.

Example : Betis vs Real Madrid AH – 3/4:0

Home Odds – 1.90, Away Odds – 1.90

* You bet 100$ on Betis to win +3/4 AH. (Here the home team is underdog; as a result of it, Betis is advanced by the AH). To win your coupon, you need Betis to win or tie the game. If Betis wins or ties the game, you win 100$ X 1.90 = 190$. Your profit is 190$ – 100$ = 90$. Consider that the game ends by Real Madrid win by 1 (0-1, 1-2, 2-3). Thus, you lose your half stake (50$) and the other half (50$) returns. If Real Madrid wins the game by 2 or more goals (0-2, 1-3, 0-3), you lose your all stake.

* You bet 100$ on Real Madrid to win -3/4 AH. To win your coupon, you need Real Madrid to win by 2 or more goals (0-2, 0-3, 1-3). If Real Madrid wins the game by 2 or more goals, you win 100$ X 1.90 = 190$. Your profit is 190$ – 100$ = 90$. If Real Madrid wins by 1 goal (0-1, 1-2, 2-3), you get your half stake (50$) and win the other half (50$ X 1.90). You win 50$ (back) + 95 (50$ X 1.90) = 145$. Your profit is 145$ – 100$ = 45$. If the game ends tied or Betis wins, you lose your all stake.

Asian handicap -1

Here the game starts 0-1. One goal advance is given to underdog team. Draw option is eliminated again.

Example : Juventus vs Bologna AH – 0:1

Home Odds – 1.80, Away Odds – 2.05

* You bet 100$ on Juventus to win -1 AH. To win your coupon, you need Juventus to win by 2 or more goals (2-0, 3-0, 3-1). If Juventus wins by 2 or more goals, you win 100$ X 1.80 = 180$. You profit is 180$ – 100$ = 80$. If Juventus wins by 1 goal (1-0, 2-1, 3-2..), you get your money back. No wager. If the game ties or Bologna wins, you lose all your stake.

* You bet 100$ on Bologna to win +1 AH. To win your coupon, you need Bologna to win, or a draw. If the game ends drawn or Bologna wins, you win 100$ X 2.05 = 205$. Your profit is 205$-100$ = 105$. If Bologna lose by 1 (1-0, 2-1, 3-2), you get your money back. No Wager. However, any Juventus win by 2 or more, make you lose your bet.