The odds in betting are a number that shows the size of the payout relative to the bet and also tells you the probability of winning. Knowing the odds and the size of your bet, you can easily calculate how much you will get for your winnings. And a quick look at the numbers will tell you who is the leader and who is the underdog in the match.
There are several systems of odds. Each of them has its own ways of writing and calculation formulas. These systems have developed historically in different regions of the world, and they were named according to them. Note that the forms of recording for the same events are very different from each other. Therefore, it is important to know what odds system is listed before making bets and calculating profits.
The most popular bookmaker odds are:
- European, aka Decimal (DO)
- British/UK (UKO)
- American/US (USO)
- Hong Kong (HKO)
- Indonesian (IO)
- Malay (MO)
For clarity, take a look at the odds for the Real Madrid vs Barcelona match recorded in different systems.
|Victory of Real Madrid||Vctory of Barcelona||Draw|
|Decimal odds, DO||2.38||1.9||9.5|
|British odds, BO||11/8||9/10||17/2|
|US odds, USO||+138||-111||+850|
|Hong Kong odds, HKO||1.38||0.9||8.5|
|Indonesian odds, IO||+1.38||-1.11||+8.5|
|Malay odds, MO||-0.72||0.9||-0.12|
Bookmakers can have different odds for the same event, even recorded in the same system. It depends on how the company’s analysts determined the probabilities of events for the match. Each major company has its own database, software and analytical department to calculate the odds.
The match prediction is formed on the basis of a large amount of data. The results of past games, weather conditions, and the presence or absence of leading players are taken into account. Dozens of factors can affect the probabilities. In addition, the odds in betting contain a bookmaker’s margin of 3-8%.
Let’s look at the way odds are recorded by different systems, using the same Real Madrid vs Barcelona match as an example.
Decimal odds, also called European odds, display the probability of an event as a decimal number with two decimal places.
Before giving the odds, analysts calculate the probabilities of all events for the match as a percentage. Let’s take our Real Madrid vs Barcelona match as an example.
The probabilities of events are as follows:
- Victory of Real Madrid – 40%
- Victory of Barcelona – 50%
- Draw – 10%
Let’s represent the probabilities in decimal form:
- Victory of Real – 100%/40% = 2.5.
- Victory of Barcelona – 100%/50% = 2.
- Draw – 100%/10% = 10.
But for these probabilities to become odds for betting, they need to include the bookmaker’s margin. If the margin is 5%, we get the following European odds:
- Victory of Real – (100%-5%)/40% = 2.375 = rounded to 2.38
- Victory of Barcelona – (100%-5%) / 50% = 1.9
- Draw – (100%-5%)/10% = 9.5
The leader of the match has a lower odds, as his victory is more likely, and the payout is proportionally less. The underdog is easy to recognize by the large odds. If a bet on it plays, the winnings will be maximum.
The payout of any bet is calculated simply by multiplying the bet amount by the Decimal odds:
Payout = bet*DO
Profit = bet*DO – bet
That is, if you bet $100 on one of these events, you will receive these payouts:
- Victory of Real Madrid – $100*2.38 = $238, net profit $238-$100 = $138
- Victory of Barcelona – $100*1.9 = $190, net profit $190-$100 = $90
- Draw – $100*10 = $1000, net income $1000-$100 = $900
The British/UK odds originated, as you might guess, in Britain. It is written as a natural fraction with a numerator and denominator, so it is also called the fractional coefficient. The difference from the Decimal odds is that when you multiply the bet by these odds you get the net profit, that is, the bet made is not taken into account. And in the case of a win you get the net income + bet.
Payout = bet*UKO + bet
Profit = bet*UKO
Consider the same example of Real Madrid vs Barcelona with a margin of 5%.
- Victory of Real Madrid – (100%-5%-40%)/40% = 11/8
- Victory of Barcelona – (100%-5%-50%)/50% = 9/10
- Draw – (100%-5%-10%)/10% = 17/2
If we recalculate the payout amounts for a $100 bet, they are the same as the Decimal odds entry. This is simply a different form of display still in use in the United Kingdom.
To better understand how the UK odds work, it’s worth paying attention to the size of the numerator and denominator. If, in our example, you bet on a victory of Barcelona, then for every $10 bet (denominator) you get $9 net profit (numerator). And if Real Madrid wins, for every $8 you bet, you get $11 in net profit.
If you can’t tell the leader and the underdog by eye, use your calculator to convert simple fractions into decimals. The leader odds are lower.
The trick with the American/US odds is that they are given as whole numbers with a “+” or “-” sign. The “-” sign indicates the leader, and the “+” sign indicates the underdog.
US odds for our match:
- Victory of Real Madrid – +138
- Victory of Barcelona – -111
- Draw – +850
The American odds with a “+” sign shows the profit, if a player bets $100.
Profit”+” = USO”+”*bet/100
To convert it to Decimal odds, a simple formula is used:
DO”+” = (USO”+” + 100)/100
The coefficient with a “-” sign shows how much to bet to win $100.
Profit”-” = bet/USO”-“*100
It can also be converted into the European coefficient, ignoring the “-” sign:
DO”-” = (USO”-” + 100)/USO”-“
If you need to convert the Decimal coefficient to the US one, use the inverse formulas:
If DO ≥ 2, then USO = (DO – 1)*100
If the DO < 2, then USO = -100/(DO – 1)
Hong Kong Odds
Hong Kong odds are similar to European odds, only they do not show the total payout but the net profit. Hong Kong odds are popular in Hong Kong and are widely used even now. They are calculated in decimal format, based on the probabilities and the bookmaker’s margin minus the bet.
This is what the odds for our example will look like:
- Victory of Real Madrid – (100%-5%)/40%-1 = 1.375 = rounded to 1.38
- Victory of Barcelona – (100%-5%)/50%-1 = 0.9
- Draw – (100%-5%)/10%-1 = 8.5
Profit = bet*HKO
Payout = bet*HKO + bet
Indonesian odds are identical to US odds, but based on a $1 bet rather than $100. They also have “+” or “-” signs that indicate the underdog and the leader.
Indonesian odds for our match:
- Victory of Real Madrid – +1.38
- Victory of Barcelona – -1.11
- Draw – +8.5
You can see that these are the same US odds, but 100 times less.
Profit”+” = bet*IO”+”
Profit”-” = bet/IO”-“
Malay odds are very popular in Southeast Asia. It is a special combination of the Decimal and US systems. Like the US system, it has “+” and “-” signs but is given as a decimal number.
Malaysian odds for our match:
- Victory of Real Madrid – -0.72
- Victory of Barcelona – +0.9
- Draw – -0.12
With plus odds that point to the leader, the net profit will be less than the bet. And with negative odds that point to the underdog, the net gain is greater than the bet.
There are formulas for calculating net profit and winnings for plus and minus odds (using number modules).
Profit”+” = bet*MO”+”
Profit”-” = bet/MO”-“
At payments, the bet is added to the sum of profit.
Now you know everything about the most popular betting odds. If you don’t want to convert odds from one system to another in your mind, you can use a bookmaker’s calculator. Also, online calculators will tell you the optimal betting sizes and profits. Shangri La Live Sports allows you to work with the type of odds to your liking. Simply set the display to Decimal odds, US or UK. Betting is fun!