Trading with bigger stakes. Taking it to the next level.

A few people asked my why I traded with stakes of 200 to 250. They pointed out that with my experience I ought to be trading bigger. This echoed my own thoughts. I have mentioned either on here or in the chatroom/forum  that my aim for this season was to increase my stakes. Until a couple of weeks ago I had increased to 300 but whenever a game looked difficult I was stepping back down to my comfort zone of 250.

A while ago I felt that I should be able to trade with 500 stakes. Why? Well I saw other people doing it and thought that they were no better than me so I tried it. Shit myself!. The trouble was that I was stepping up from 200 to 500 in one go. Way too fast.

I backed one of the Wiliams sisters when I thought she was in control of the set and almost immediately it went against me. It was probably a poor entry point. The only thing I remember is seeing that big red 500 when I entered the bet.

So I went back to 250. I liked 250. I didn’t have a heart attack when the red 250 appeared on the other player.

I have always felt as though I am missing opportunities. Maybe I need new strategies. Maybe I am missing the strategies that the really big players use. I told myself that if I can make 1500 a month part time using 250 stakes why would I need to risk more? When I go full time after this season even on 250 stakes I can make £600 to £800 a week fairly comfortably.

But recently a couple more people questioned why I was stuck on that stake. So I increased to 300. I was totally comfortable when I clicked to enter a 300 trade so it was obviously within my level of experience to use that stake. So I increased to 350. Then 400. No adverse reaction when I clicked the mouse. I wasn’t suddenly sat in my own mess. Maybe the time was right.

If anyone asked me whether it was a good idea to increase their stake by such an amount in a short space of time then naturally I would be advising against it. I think in my situation I had held my stake too low for too long.

So I now use 500.

What I didnt expect was that it would change the way I trade. We have all seen posts on other forums telling you that its easier to trade with bigger stakes because you don’t need to get as many ticks. When you are using high stakes I feel its important to remember what that stake is. Its not 500. Its 500 POUNDS. Thats a lot of money and has to be respected. If someone told you they were placing a bet for £500 you’d think they were either mad, reckless or had a rich dad.

So when entering a higher  stake I choose my entry points very carefully. I am concentrating more on how many ticks a successful trade might bring me.

If using, for example,Back the Server I may not stay in for the whole game. Often in a tight match you will get 10+ ticks if the server goes 30-0 up. You will only get significant extra ticks if the game is won to 0. If it is won to 15 or 30 then you won’t get a much better price than you got at 30-0. And the risk is less because you’re not exposed to the market as long. You need to be quick to get out of a trade if it looks like it can go against you. It had focused my mind even more than it was before on the discipline and bank protection side of trading.

But have my results and profits improved? Well in the last couple of weeks I have averaged over £200 a day. If that becomes the norm then I’m looking at over 1K a week. 4K a month! Now that wouldn’t put me in Adam Heathecote’s league or anywhere near some of the guys who read the blog and forum. But thats a lot of money to me.

My “acceptable” loss level has naturally increased. I have a mental stoploss set at half my stake so therefore its now £250. I don’t get many losses but occasionally I feel that a trade isn’t under control and I will get out if my hedgeable figure hits -£250. I have had 1 in the last 2 weeks (-£220) but as the profits are also scaled up  I made that back the next couple of games.

I’ll keep you up to date with how its going but its an exciting time for me personally. The danger is in getting carried away and I have to avoid losing discipline. I have never been one for post-it notes on the screen with rules but maybe its time for something similar. I’d be interested to hear how you remind yourself of your trading rules as some of them may be of use to me.

    Trading Guide

Learning to trade: Easier than it used to be?

When I started to find out about Betfair trading a couple of years ago the amount of information that was freely available seemed quite limited. There were fewer forums. Fewer blogs. Those who obviously knew what they were talking about weren’t about to give away their “edge”.

Any information you could find had to be pieced together from various sources. That situation has definately changed. Now there are several forums, dozens and dozens of blogs and chatrooms where the new breed of “experts” reside to hand out their wisdom to the “newbies”. Does that make it easier for a new trader to find the information that they crave? As a new trader entering the trading community ( I use the word community in the same context as in Basra City is a community) they are keen to grasp the information that is given. The problem is that its an easy mistake to make to assume that the information is accurate and also given for the right reasons.

Until you know a little of the terminology and culture its virtually impossible to sort the crap from the quality. In a forum or chatroom a particular approach or suggestion can be dismissed by a seemingly experienced trader. But where can the pedigree of the trader be checked? Are they dismissing an idea because they have tried it over many months and found it to have little merit or are they simply dismissing it because they can’t make it work themselves? Did they join the forum 2 days ago or 2 years ago?

One particular example is based around the recent problems with the tennis scoreboards.  When I started to learn the tennis markets I didn’t have live pics. So I learned to read the market itself and to use a scoreboard to confirm that I had read it correctly. By looking at when the money comes in ( or leaves) the market, how much comes in etc you can pretty much read what’s happening. The scoreboard can be several seconds behind but that’s ok as we are using it as confirmation only. This only works when the match has a good amount matched and also has plenty of money entering the market inplay. there have been recent situations where there was a large amount of money matched on a game before it started but then relatively little money coming in during the game. You also need the scoreboard to be uniformly slow. If its always 7 seconds behind then thats not a problem. If one minute its 7 seconds behind and then 15 seconds behind its of little use.

During Skype sessions I have had participants who had Live Sky pics while I was trading purely from a scoreboard and comments were made about how accurately I was reading what was happening. For example a move in favour of the receiver but with lower bet amounts than you would expect to see for a point being won usually indicates that its second serve.

I have advised new traders to learn to read the market in this way but have had the technique dismissed as being impossible/unworkable for new traders.  To learn anything new you have to start somewhere and something like trading takes months and sometimes years to get to grips with.  The negative comments may disuade newer traders from attempting to learn something new.

As in every large group there are many negative attitudes among traders. There are also some very positive individuals but at first glance it can be difficult to differentiate between the two types.

There is a large amount of superb info for the new trader and also a hell of a lot of complete crap. There are ofcourse many guides, ebooks etc out there which claim to have the answers in a concise package. I can talk about this type of information from both sides. Both as a customer and as a vendor. I have bought the occasional ebook in the past. Most have been very poor and a couple have been little more than a rip off. Howver some have contained enough info to justify the price tag.

You need to do some research before buying anything like this. Don’t necessarily rely on the views of the people who simply shout the loudest. With my vendor’s hat on I can speak from experience that the vast majority of people who criticise my Tennis Guide have never read it! They see that I am selling information and therefore it MUST be a scam. These people have no credibility. If they read the Guide and THEN criticise it then thats fair enough. But from the new trader’s viewpoint who reviews the reviewers? 😉

So to any new traders who may be reading this you have access to a larger amount of information than was around a couple of years ago. So its easier to find but then you need to research the credibility of the information and those who are recommending or criticising it.

Does that means its easier to learn trading? I don’t think so.

    Trading Guide

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