Game Plan

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No one ever got rich in business while investing with the methodology many bright people fall prey to in the gambling world. And, in the end, when losses are absorbed the conversation that “no one ever really wins” and “I had a lot of fun” replace bottom line profits.

Gambling does not need to be a one-way ticket to despair any more than playing the stock market is a sure way to go broke. Most gains in the stock market are methodical in nature, and trades are made while considering risk, value and long-term objectives.  Good information is at the hub of success, and the savviest investor will always take advantage of elements that improve the bottom line.  If a stock trader was offered a key that was guaranteed to turn 7% of their buys from losses to profits, that investor would seize the opportunity without a second thought.  A 7% gain in the stock market is huge profits; 7% in the gambling world can be disregarded by an eager player looking to make a killing.

In 1981, I opened Qoxhi Picks thinking that providing point spread winners was a sure formula to satisfy clients while they generated consistent profits.  That is no more true than buying a new set of luggage is paramount to ensuring an enjoyable vacation. Having a nice set of luggage with wheels that roll smooth and handles engineered for comfort is a nice element, but a myriad of other factors need to be orchestrated for a vacation to truly be successful and provide maximum enjoyment.

Making money in the point spread market requires the same basic business approach as any money making endeavor … bright money management.

Winning point spread plays are a necessary key to a profitable football season of wagering, but without proper money management and the avoidance of haphazard wagers based on a televised game or favorite team, the benefits of winning point spread recommendations can be derailed.  The sports books want you to have the mindset you are gambling when you place a wager.  They win by definition when you gamble.  Here is how Webster defines gambling:



                   To bet on an uncertain outcome, as of a contest. To play a game

                   of chance for stakes.  To take a risk in the hope of gaining an

                   advantage of a benefit.  To engage in reckless or hazardous behavior.

                   An act or undertaking of uncertain outcome; a risk:I took a gamble

                   that stock prices would rise.

By definition one that gambles is taking a risk, banking on hope, playing a game of chance as opposed to putting the odds in their favor.  The casinos and sportsbooks prey on this mentality, and while they structure their games to provide a built in advantage for the house, they are also cognizant that some “players” develop disciplines and methods that wrench away the house advantage.

Beating blackjack is tied to the ability to count cards and gauge wagers in accordance with edges the remaining cards offer. Beating craps can not only be tied to how one places wagers and buys odds available, but some have actually mastered the art of how to throw dice to enhance their chances for success.  Individuals who have mastered these two table games quickly become obvious to the casino operators, and they are respectfully asked to take their business elsewhere.

Many protest that they are not allowed to apply their talents in particular establishments, but the rules of business allow casino operators to refuse service to specific individuals just as surely as a restaurant can refuse to serve someone not wearing shoes or a shirt.  Consider it from the casino or bookie perspective, if they have someone playing a game in their establishment or placing bets that are consistently costing them money, how long should they be forced to absorb those losses?  After all, they have costs of doing business, and they are not in it so customers can skim their profits.

There are plenty of individuals that fall prey to the house advantage, even a large portion of the public that add to the house-take in sports wagering gained by the vigorish, the cost of making a bet.  The standard “vig” is 10%, the amount a player will put at stake in addition to the amount he stands to gain.  In other words, a player will wager eleven units in hopes of gaining a profit of ten units.  Wins bring back 10% less than losses cost.

Add to that factor gambling tendencies, and the house stands to make substantial gains while serving free drinks, offering complimentary rooms, meals and shows for individuals gambling in their establishment.  More than 99% of people wagering in casinos or placing bets with a bookie on a sporting event are lambs to the slaughter, and the people paying for the bright lights, free drinks and office staff are not interested in allowing wolves to pilfer their profits.

Casino operators and bookies love gamblers.  My definition of gambling is tangent to Webster’s.  I see gamblers as those individuals who wager more when they are ahead in hopes of making a killing until their profits are gone; or wager more when they are behind in hopes of getting back to even, until they are in over their heads.

I find it quite interesting that Webster’s definition of gambling includes a reference to the chances of a stock rising or falling.  I know my broker friends take umbrage when their business is categorized as a gamble, just as much as they scoff at the prospect of mine being an investment.  In truth, we go back to the dictionary to determine this debate.  This is how Webster defines invest:


                   transitive verb

                   To commit (money) in order to earn a financial return.  To make

                   use of for future benefits or advantages.  To involve or engage

                   especially emotionally:were deeply invested in their children’s lives.

No need to wonder why Wall Street types would like to promote their financial instruments as investment tools and avoid the gambling implication.  That is no more surprising than the casino’s and sports books wanting to remain considered gambling houses instead of investment shops.  There are some key differences between gambling and investment propositions, by definition gambling is a “hope” and “risk” while investing is “to earn a financial return” and “make use of for future benefits or advantages.”

If the first two factors are available in column A, hope and risk, and column B lists return and benefits, give me column B.

What the financial industry relies on to purport their instruments as investments are information and money management strategies.  That said, once you buy a stock, invest in real estate or make some other use of your money in an attempt to earn profits, there is no doubt some degree of risk.  If sports wagering is to be considered an investment over a gamble, then information would have to reduce risk and financial strategies would have to be strictly adhered to in order to maximize the chances for bottom line success.

The tool Qoxhi offers to assist clients to transform their wagering dollars from a gamble to an investment is the Account Manager. It calculates with the ease of clicking on the NFL selections exact amounts to be wagered on each game to stay on a bright business path. The personalized Account Manager dictates wager amounts on each selection to allow clients to wager with the confidence of making an investment that is expected to earn a thirty-to-sixty-percent profit over the 21 week NFL regular and postseason.

Their are benefits for a business approach to the football season that show up in the bottom line.