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How to Beat the Bookies in the Football Over/Under Market

One of the beautiful things about football betting is the availability of several markets to bet on. Unlike in other sports where one can only bet on a few outcomes, football presents you with a host of possibilities and opportunities to make money. In this article, we’re going to explore how to beat the bookies…

One of the beautiful things about football betting is the availability of several markets to bet on. Unlike in other sports where one can only bet on a few outcomes, football presents you with a host of possibilities and opportunities to make money. In this article, we’re going to explore how to beat the bookies in the game of football in – the over/under market.

The Over/Under market

This market is quite helpful in the sense that it saves you from the stress of predicting what the actual outcome of a football match will be.

With the Over/Under market, all you have to do is predict the range of goals that will be scored in any given match, and if your prediction is right, you walk away with your winnings.

In practice, you could predict there won’t be more than two goals (under 2.5) scored in a match. Or you could predict that there will be more than three goals (over 3.5) scored in a match.

However, that’s not to say that betting on the Over/Under market is cherries and cheese.

Far from it!

Below are a few steps to help you beat the bookies while betting on this market.

Step one: find the average goals per game

Before going ahead to bet on the range of goals in any football match, the first step is to first research the average number of goals scored per game by the two teams.

Ironically, this is the trick the bookies use, too, to determine the odds for the Under/Over market for any given match. They look at the number of goals a team has scored over a given season (or a specific period) and then divide this number by the total number of games played.

Step two: Calculate the probabilities of the suspected scorelines occurring

Now that you’ve researched the average number of goals your target teams score per game. The next thing is to calculate the probabilities (chances) of various suspected scorelines happening. Logically, the suspected scorelines should fall within the range of goals you believe the game can produce.

For example, if you feel a game has a tendency to be cagey and might not produce so many goals. You may be looking at a suspected scoreline like 0:0, 1:0, 1:1, or 2:1. This kind of scorelines can fall within the “under 0.5, 1.5, 2.5, or 3.5 goal range.”

If you don’t have any suspected scoreline in mind, don’t worry. You can start your probability calculation from the bottom (calculate for under/over 0.5 goals), and work your way up (as high as under/over 4.5 goals). The only difference between you and someone who has suspected scorelines in mind is that you’ll need to do more calculations.

To calculate the probabilities of the suspected scorelines happening, you’ll need to employ the “John Haigh model,” which was published in his book “Taking Chances.”

In this book, John Haigh drafted a table that calculates the probabilities of a team scoring none, one, two, three, or four or more goals based on their average number of goals per game:

Average number of goals 0 1 2 3 4 or more
0.8 45% 36% 14% 4% 1%
1.2 30% 36% 22% 9% 3%
1.6 20% 32% 26% 14% 8%
2.0 14% 27% 27% 18% 14%

Let’s say you visit a site like to bet on a match where the home team has averaged 1.2 goals per game, and the away team has averaged 0.8. You can calculate the probability for under 2.5 goals happening by using the John Haigh table above.

But before you go ahead with the calculation, you’ll first need to determine the scorelines that can lead to an under 2.5 goals situation. This would be 0-0, 1-0, 0-1, 1-1, 2-0, and 0-2.

Below is a table showing the calculation for each scoreline probability.

PS: Note that you can do a similar calculation for under/over 0.5, 1.5, 3.5, etc. goals. We’ve chosen under 2.5 goals because we suspect that the game (between two teams who have averaged a total of 2 goals per game) will not produce too many goals. If you can’t suspect anything, just start with 0.5 goals and work your way up.

Exact score Probability of home team
to score the indicated number
of goals
Probability of away team
to score the indicated number
of goals
of exact score
0-0 30% 45% 30% x 45% = 13.5%
1-0 35% 45% 36% x 45% = 16.2%
0-1 30% 36% 30% x 36% = 10.8%
1-1 36% 36% 36% x 36% = 12.96%
2-0 22% 45% 22% x 45% = 9.9%
0-2 30% 14% 30% x 14% = 4.2%

Total under 2.5 goals probability:


Since we know the individual probabilities of each possible scoreline that can lead to under 2.5 goals occurring, we now add them together to get the overall probability of the match ending in under 2.5 goals, which gives us:

13.5% + 16.2% + 10.8% + 12.96% + 9.9% + 4.2% = 67.5%

Step 3: convert the probability to decimal odds

Since your bookmaker will most likely present the odds for Under/Over market in decimal odds. It’s expected of us to convert the overall probability we have above into decimal odds, too.

You can use this formula to do that:

Decimal odds = 100 / probability

In the case of our 67.56% possibility, we’ll have a decimal odd of 1.48.

This means that you should only bet on under 2.5 goals for a match if you find a bookmaker offering odds of higher than 1.48.

If you can’t find such odds on any bookies’ site, use a similar approach to calculate for other ranges of goals, and then compare the odds.

Although this approach does not guarantee winnings, it does provide you with a trusted strategy that can fetch you a positive expected value.

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Daily Financial News

Don’t Count On JPY Correction; Staying Long GBP/JPY

The path of the potential pace of the JPY decline may still be underestimated by markets, which continue trading the JPY long.

While the 10% USDJPY advance from September lows looks impressive from a momentum point of view, it may no thave been driven by Japan’s institutional investors reducing their hedging ratios or Japan’s household sector reestablishing carry trades.

Instead, investors seemed to have been caught on the wrong foot, concerned about a sudden decline of risk appetite or the incoming US administration being focused on trade issues and not on spending. Spending requires funding and indeed the President-elect Trump’s team appears to be focused on funding. Here are a few examples: Reducing corporate taxation may pave the way for US corporates repatriating some of their USD2.6trn accumulated foreign profits. Cutting bank regulation could increase the risk-absorbing capacity within bank balance sheets. Hence, funding conditions – including for the sovereign – might generally ease. De-regulating the oil sector would help the trade balance, slowing the anticipated increase in the US current account deficit. The US current account deficit presently runs at 2.6% of GDP, which is below worrisome levels. Should the incoming government push for early trade restrictions, reaction (including Asian sovereigns reducing their holdings) could increase US funding costs, which runs against the interest of the Trump team.

Instead of counting on risk aversion to stop the JPY depreciation, we expect nominal yield differentials and the Fed moderately hiking rates to unleash capital outflows from Japan.The yield differential argumenthas become more compelling with the BoJ turning into yield curve managers. Via this policy move, rising inflation rates push JPY real rates and yields lower, which will weaken the JPY. Exhibit 12 shows how much Japan’s labor market conditions have tightened. A minor surge in corporate profitability may now be sufficient, pushing Japan wages up and implicity real yields lower.

JPY dynamics are diametrical to last year . Last year, the JGB’s “exhausted”yield curve left the BoJ without a tool to push real yields low enough to adequately address the weakened nominal GDP outlook. JPY remained artificially high at a time when the US opted for sharply lower real yields. USDJPY had to decline, triggering JPY bullish secondround effects via JPY-based financial institutions increasing their FX hedge ratios and Japan’s retail sector cutting its carry trade exposures. Now the opposite seems to be happening. The managed JGB curve suggests rising inflation expectations are driving Japan’s real yield lower. The Fed reluctantly hiking rates may keep risk appetite supported but increase USD hedging costs.Financial institutions reducinghedge ratios and Japan’s household sector piling back into the carry trade could provide secondround JPY weakening effects

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Daily Financial News

Mexico raises interest rates, cites Trump as risk

The head of Mexico’s central bank says U.S. Republican candidate Donald Trump represents a “hurricane” sized threat to Mexico.

Banco de Mexico Gov. Agustin Carstens told the Radio Formula network Friday that a Trump presidency “would be a hurricane and a particularly intense one if he fulfills what he has been saying in his campaign.”

Trump has proposed building a wall along the border and re-negotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Mexico’s central bank raised its prime lending rate by half a percent to 4.75 percent Thursday, citing “nervousness surrounding the possible consequences of the U.S. elections, whose implications for Mexico could be particularly significant.”

Mexico’s peso had lost about 6 percent in value against the dollar since mid-August. It recovered slightly after the rate hike

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Financial News

Africa’s first Fairtrade certified gold co-operative offers hope to gold miners living in poverty

Syanyonja Artisan Miners’ Alliance (SAMA) has become the first artisanal small scale mining co-operative in Africa to become Fairtrade certified, bringing much needed hope to impoverished communities who risk their lives to mine the rich gold seam that runs around Lake Victoria.

SAMA is one of nine previously informal groups from Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania which has benefitted from a pilot project launched by Fairtrade in 2013. This innovative program aims to extend the benefits of Fairtrade gold to artisanal miners across East Africa.

In that short time, SAMA has undergone training in business and entrepreneurship, as well as safe use of mercury, internal control systems, labour rights and better working conditions, health and safety and more. Previously, daily contact with toxic chemicals used to process gold meant members risked disease, premature births and even death.  Fairtrade gold was first launched in 2011, and SAMA now joins Fairtrade certified gold mines MACDESA, AURELSA and SOTRAMI in Peru.

The co-operative produces just 5 kg gold per year, but nevertheless has the potential to significantly benefit many people in the local community through better conditions through certification. It is expected that Fairtrade and organizations like Cred Jewellery will support the miners, ensuring their gold can be refined and made available to jewellers in the UK and other markets.

Gonzaga Mungai, Gold Manager at Fairtrade Africa said: “This is a truly momentous and historical achievement and the realisation of a dream that is many years in the making. Gold production is an important source of income for people in rural economies. Congratulations to SAMA, it sets a precedent which shows that if groups like this can achieve certification, then it can work for others right across the African continent.”

The Fairtrade Gold Standard encourages better practice and changes to come in line with international regulation around the production and trade of so-called ‘conflict minerals’. Under the Standard, miners are required to:

  • Uphold a human rights policy preventing war crimes, bribery, money laundering and child labour
  • Clearly represent where the minerals were mined
  • Minimise the risks of conflict minerals through robust risk assessments and collaboration across supply chains
  • Report to buyers and trading partners regarding the risks of conflict minerals

Now in its second phase, the programme will focus on supporting other mining groups in the region to access affordable loans and explore a phased approach to accessing the Fairtrade market, allowing more mining co-operatives across Africa to participate in the programme.

Gonzaga added: “Sourcing African metals from smallscale miners in the Great Lakes Region is the responsible thing to do. For a long time companies have avoided buying gold from this region, with devastating consequences for impoverished communities who were already struggling. It has driven trade deeper underground, as unscrupulous buyers pay lower prices and launder illegal gold into legitimate supply chains. That’s why we have chosen to work with these groups to help them earn more from their gold within a robust compliance system that offers social, environmental, and economic protections.”

The Fairtrade gold programme offers a small but scalable solution to sustainable sourcing of gold from the region in line with Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act in the US, OECD Due Diligence Guidance and recent EU Supply-Chain Due Diligence proposals which could come into effect in 2016. This means that up to 880,000 EU firms that use tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold in manufacturing consumer products could be obliged to provide information on steps they have taken to identify and address risks in their supply chains for so-called ‘conflict minerals’.

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