Betfair graphs are useful!
Even if they have no time-stamp on them…
As promised in a previous post, my thoughts on Betfair graphs and how they can be useful:
It’s a common misconception on various trading forums that Betfair graphs are of little-no use. There are occasions where they don’t provide much assistance although more often than not they are a great, when if used correctly.
My most favourable approach is to look at the Betfair graphs as an overall indicator of the market. Not just a short-term one trick pony! If you base a trade purely on one graph it doesn’t make too much sense to me as the whole market works together, sometimes resisting each other (prices) and sometimes spurring each-other on.
Below is a pic of the top 4 heading the betting in on race. I did rather well in this race purely because I interpreted the Betfair graphs correctly. An ideal situation!
(Betfair graphs – click to enlarge)
Ok so I took the screenshot of the Betfair graphs with 15 seconds before the start for full effect. The blue lines show where the Betfair graph was when I first opened the market (with about 8 minutes left to go). To the left of the blue line is of little relevance in my opinion (I may be wrong but at this stage im focusing purely on the starting shows).
Runner 3 caught my eye as it was already gently steaming up until the live show, runner 2 was of a little interest as it already had some volume to it prior (worth keeping an eye on encase that changed though). After a minute or so of watching it was obvious to me this was going to be a scalping type of market mainly, unless anything major cropped up with big orders coming in late on.
It’s likely there was a lot of trader’s on runner 2, as their was a lot matched on this runner without a great amount of movement… the market was ‘ranging’ so I left that one alone.
Runner 4 was of no interest to me as the fill rate was going to be poor which leaving a bit of a predicament if I was to get caught on the wrong side of things (turnover is safety in my eyes). So that left runners 1 & 3, the slightly more interesting Betfair graphs if you will.
Runner 1 was the Fav according to all the bookies and it had shortened slightly, it couldn’t have been too popular though as support never came and it drifted shortly before the off, when volume increased it started to drift at a reasonable rate. So as soon as that happened I was sat there waiting with only one thing to do really…. back runner 3 and play it defensively…. sounds all very easy doesn’t it? not always a case of seeing what is going to happen but more of seeing what ‘can happen’ and if it doesn’t? scratch at the entry! In all honesty it was an educated guess into the markets looking at the current activity too although I wasn’t ‘certain’ like people seem to think traders are most of the time.
I rode it from 7.8 to 7.2 taking a scalp or two on the way. Only a few ticks but at 0.2 a tick it doesn’t take a lot to make money. Reading the graphs seems to work a lot better for swing markets rather than the scalper’s I find. But the main point I want to make is; a lot of this conclusion come from looking at the bigger picture, how everything was fitting together, or not in some cases. If I’d just looked at one graph I’d have been quite lost…
Sunday 30th Jan 2011…
On Sunday I was fortunate some spare time. It was a slightly better Sunday than usual with more betting activity in general, sometimes Sundays can be quite dull – but it’s the only time I have to trade with a 9-5 job at the moment. Adopting the slow and steady attitude rather than the ‘bigshot’ attitude produces far far better results for me. I think it’s purely down to confidence but over time I guess I’ll understand more.
On a day where I have the ‘bigshot’ attitude typically P/L will be +/- £5 to £30 in a race, and less consistent. Although less consistency catches me out every time! the ‘slow and steady wins the race’ attitude I took yesterday is far better for me on a mental level. My maximum stake was £60 so I was never out of my comfort zone at any point.
The P/L shows what I mean by slow and steady.Only losing in 5 of 20 markets is a real confidence boost too…
Article: Horse Racing Trading on Betfair