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What are Betting Odds?

How odds work is one of the questions most newcomers to gambling ask, and there are interesting aspects that even veterans might not fully know.

Understanding how odds work and calculating odds is something that anyone interested in wagering should spend some time learning. In a nutshell, the odds reflect the chances of success of your selection in the eyes of sports betting sites. They also indicate how much money you will win if your wager is successful. It seems a pretty simple principle, but betting odds can also be confusing. This is why we have created this betting guide to help New Jersey bettors make more informed choices regarding wagering online.

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What are betting odds?

Betting odds are made by sports betting sites and represent what they believe it is the likelihood of an outcome to occur. The odds can be Moneyline or American way, with a plus or minus in front of a number, or can be represented by a fraction (2/1) in the UK or a decimal in Europe (3.00). Betting odds are used for any event that sports betting sites accept bets on, from American football to hockey to politics. 

What is probability?

Probability is how likely you think an event is going to happen. If a sports betting site believe that an event has a high likelihood of occurring, then the related odds will be lower and the other way around. For instance, in a coin toss, the probability of getting heads is one in two, which means 50% probability. 

How to read betting odds and how American odds are working

Now that you know that odds are directly linked with probabilities, you can use betting odds to calculate the potential returns of a wager. For example, in an American football match, you might have New England Patriots at -145 and the Miami Dolphins at +130. If you believe the Miami Dolphins will win, the odds indicate that for every $100 you stake on them, you will get $230 win (which is made by $130 plus your $100 stake). If you wager $10 and the wager is successful, you will get back $23 ($10 is your stake, and $13 is the profit). The calculation, in this case, would be $10/$100 x 130.

The minus in front of the New England Patriots odds indicates that they are the favourites. In this case, the -145 means that you get $100 for every $145 you stake. So, if you wager $10 the return would be $16.90: which will be made of your $10 stake plus $6.90 profit. This is calculated as $10/$145 x 100). 

In both instances, the calculation is: (actual stake/American odds stake) x American odds winnings.

How odds work summary 

After this short betting guide on odds, you now know how betting odds are working, the different types of odds, how to read odds and how they relate with probabilities and how to calculate a potential return from a winning wager. YOu are now ready to start wagering, however, don’t forget to take advantage of some incredible new customer offers that are available on the NewJerseySafeBetting’s sports betting offer page. 

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John was born and raised in London, John has always been in love with American sports. He started to write football articles back in 2006 on his own blog and has also worked for several newspapers. John other passion was betting and has worked as a trader for several top sports book in the UK. As sports trader and has joined leading UK betting tipping site BettingTips4You in 2013 and he is now head of content. He has a great passion for US Sports so hasn't wasted the opportunity to write also for NewJerseySafeBetting, now that online sportsbetting has been legalized in the state.