Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Handicappers Edge and Traders Hedge

If you define yourself as a gambler/handicapper/punter then you are focused primarily on identifying a unique advantage in a sporting event that is not already accounted for by the public odds. By contrast, if you define yourself as an investor/speculator/trader then you are focused primarily on taking an initial position in a market and then protecting that position against a negative move.
The former approach is fundamental in nature and the latter technical. Both strategies have their respective Achilles heels! With fundamental approaches, you never know in advance if you have an edge in an upcoming sports event; with technical approaches you are uncertain when to exit a particular market by either “greening up” or “redding down” your current position.
In terms of money management, handicappers generally preach the Kelly Criterion and use Sportsbooks while traders affirm “Bold Play” and frequent betting exchanges. In general, the age profile of handicappers is higher than that of traders simply because betting exchanges are a relatively recent innovation. Handicappers try to automate their plays by using systems whereas traders use bots.