Fixed odds explained


To understand fixed odds betting you need to know the types of fixed odds available. Fixed odds bookmakers use different types of odds depending on where they are based. Fractional odds predominate in the UK, Decimal odds in Europe and Moneyline odds in the USA. One very good reason to learn about these different odds types is because you can find excellent value in the odds offered by fixed odds bookmakers in different countries. If you are sports arbitrage betting this information will certainly of of benefit as well. For reference the contents of this odds tutorial are shown below.

Fractional fixed odds
Decimal odds
Moneyline oddsIf we are talking about sports fixed odds betting, odds are simply the probability of a win, lose, or draw of various sporting events. Sports fixed odds are displayed in various ways….


Fractional fixed odds

Favoured by bookmakers in the United Kingdom, fractional fixed odds quote the net total that will be paid out to the bettor, should he win, relative to his stake. Odds of 4/1 (read “four-to-one” or “four-to-one against”) would imply that the bettor stands to make a £400 profit on a £100 stake. If the odds are 1/4 (read “four-to-one on”), the bettor will make £25 on a £100 stake. Should he win, the bettor always receives his original stake back, so if the odds are 4/1 you would actually receive a total of £500 in return upon winning a £100 bet (£400 plus the original £100). Fixed odds of 1/1 are often called evens.
Fractional odds are also known as British odds, UK odds or actually in Britain, traditional odds.


Decimal fixed odds

Favoured in continental Europe and Canada, decimal odds differ from fractional odds in that the bettor must first part with their stake in order to make a bet, the figure quoted would the winning amount that would be paid out to the bettor. Therefore, the decimal fixed odds of an outcome are equivalent to the decimal value of the fractional fixed odds, plus one, and even odds would be quoted as 2. The 4/1 fractional odds discussed above would be quoted as 5, while the 1/4 odds would be quoted as 1.25. This is considered to be ideal for parlay betting, because the odds to be paid out are simply the product of the odds for each outcome wagered on. Decimal fixed odds are also favoured by betting exchanges because they are the easiest to work with for trading.
Decimal odds are also known as European odds, or continental odds in the UK.


Moneyline fixed odds

Moneyline odds are favoured by American bookmakers. There are two possibilities, the figure quoted can be either positive or negative. Moneyline odds are often referred to as American odds. Moneyline refers to odds on the straight-up outcome of a game with no consideration to a point spread.


Positive Figures


If the figure quoted is positive, the odds are quoting how much money will be won on a $100 wager (this is done if the odds are better than even). Even odds are quoted as $100. Fractional odds of 4/1 would be quoted as $400, while fractional odds of 1/4 could not be quoted as a positive figure.


Negative Figures


If the figure quoted is negative, then the moneyline fixed odds are quoting how much money must be wagered to win $100 (this is done if the odds are worse than even). Even odds are quoted as -$100. Fractional odds of 1/4 would be quoted as -$400, however fractional odds of 4/1 could not be quoted as a negative figure.

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