A betting exchange may look a little like a regular sportsbook, but it doesn’t really work like one, so there are two things to consider when looking at betting markets. Firstly, the potential is there for the operator to offer any market that any other sportsbook currently does. That means every sport, and every possible straight bet you would find at your normal sportsbook you can also potentially trade on here. However, the key word there is potentially.
While these markets exist, because the operator here is not ‘the house’ they do not define what will be available. This is done by other users putting money in the market for you to take a position against. This means that if there is no money in the market, you can’t trade it. Or, if there is money in that market, but only a limited amount, the amount you could trade would be restricted as a result.
This is called liquidity and will be a key factor in your strategies when using Sporttrade. If Sporttrade works like foreign betting exchanges, the amount of money in any market will increase as the start of the event approaches, so larger trades can be completed, and positions closed. Theoretically, this can mean that you can lock in a profit before the event even begins.
Odds – Are there odds on a betting exchange?
Looking for a betting odds comparison? As with the betting markets, the ‘odds’ are not set by the operator, but by the other users of the betting exchange. This is not done on a one-to-one basis, so you are not taking the opposite position to a single person, but all of the money placed on the opposite outcome to yours is pooled together.
Because the operator is not the house, they will have little control over the money that is on either side, so the concept of odds doesn’t really apply here either. So, while you might expect to see odds in the traditional American format like you would at a regular sportsbook, that’s not what you are going to see here.
You won’t see anything in decimal or fractional odds either, as Sporttrade have replaced these with another indicator which is, on balance, probably simpler. They are basing this on probability, so if for instance, the Steelers have a 47% chance of winning, what you’ll see where you might expect to see the odds will be a ‘47’.
As this is defined by other users, the operator will not be able to offer any preferential ‘odds’ although while there is little money in a market, there might be the possibility of making the equivalent of a ‘value bet’. Also, as things stand (and looking again towards how European betting exchanges work) exotic bets have no real parallel in this format, so those types of operator offers probably won’t be available either.
Live betting & streaming – Can you watch live games here?
Given what you’ve already read, you might expect the live betting markets to be fast and furious. In principle that could be true, but as this exchange is not yet live, any expectations would have to be based on what we have seen on European betting exchanges.
If live trading on Sporttrade reflects this, you would be able to live trade on any of the markets that you could before the event started. That aspect would seem very familiar to regular sportsbook users, as will closing out an in-play trade to anyone who has used a sportsbook with a cash out button.
You will also know from that experience, that speed is vital here as you watch the markets and either lock in a profit while you are ahead, or close out a losing position to stop things getting worse.
There is no indication so far as to whether Sporttrade will be live streaming any events or not, or even if the same graphical representation of in-game action used by many sportsbooks will be used. However, as many online bets are placed by those watching the event on TV or in a bar, you might expect live trades to be made the same way.
Limits – what kind of limits should you expect?
The subject of limits is one with two answers. The first is that there are currently no defined limits for trading amounts on the site so far, or any written indication on the terms and conditions or FAQs currently viewable on the site. While these might be defined at a later date, as the operator here does not act as the ‘house’, they might have to rely on other limits.
As you have already seen, the amount of money available for any particular trade is not defined by the operator but by other customers funding the opposite position with their money. In principle then, the limit for any particular transaction is the money available, or the ‘liquidity’.
As discussed earlier, this liquidity could increase as the start of the event approaches, so in effect the limits at any given time are variable. So, while the limit 48hrs before a game could be hundreds of dollars, just before kick off it could easily be tens of thousands. As already mentioned, however, no formal limits have been defined by the operator.
One limit they have outlined though, is the ability for a customer to self-limit the amount of money they can use.
In conclusion – an innovate new way to place sports bets
Sporttrade has much to recommend it. The extra options offered by a sports trading platform should not be underestimated by experienced sportsbook users, or those who might not want to take time to learn the principles involved.
While straight sports betting means you place a bet and have to await the outcome, sports trading allows you more control to exit a position to your advantage if the opportunity presents itself. While the sums involved can mean your profit from a trade might be smaller than a winning bet, at the same time, closing out a losing position before the end of an event can reduce any losses.
The benefits of this might not be immediately obvious but using a platform like Sporttrade can open up a whole range of new strategies that would not have been possible by just using regular sportsbooks.
Even though Sporttrade is yet to fully go live, and when it does will initially be limited to just New Jersey, the potential of betting exchanges makes this something you might want to be involved with, as soon as you can.