25 June 2023
Tips & Tricks
The Concept of Expected Value in Gambling: An Essential Guide
When it comes to gambling, understanding the mathematics behind the game can provide a significant advantage. A central concept in this respect is the Expected Value (EV). Essentially, the EV can guide gamblers to make informed decisions, potentially turning the odds in their favor.
Expected Value is a mathematical term used to describe the average outcome of a given scenario when the scenario is repeated multiple times. It is the core concept in probability theory and is exceptionally useful in various fields, including gambling. The expected value gives gamblers an idea of their potential win or loss on each bet they place.
To calculate the expected value in gambling, you need to multiply each possible outcome by the likelihood of that outcome, then sum up those values. However, keep in mind that the actual outcome of a single bet can deviate significantly from the expected value as it’s a measure of the long-term average.
|Casino Game||Expected Value|
|Blackjack||-0.5% on average, varies with rules|
|Baccarat Player Bet||-1.2%|
|Baccarat Banker Bet||-1.05%|
|Caribbean Stud Poker||-5.22%|
|Casino Hold’em||-2.16% on average, varies with rules|
|Craps||From -1.36% to -14.35%|
The expected value varies from one casino game to another, as each game has different rules, odds, and payouts. Games like Blackjack and Poker are skill-based to some extent and offer better expected value if you employ strategies. In contrast, games like Roulette and Slot machines are more reliant on luck, and the expected value is usually less favorable to the player.
Understanding and calculating the expected value is vital in gambling as it helps determine the long-term profitability of a game. If a game has a positive expected value, it means the player will, on average, make a profit over numerous games. On the other hand, a negative expected value indicates that the player is more likely to lose money over the long run.