Do Bogleheads Gamble Online?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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Lon
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Do Bogleheads Gamble Online?

Post by Lon » Sat May 21, 2011 10:02 am

Do you bet the races, boxing, ball games?

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kingsnake
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Post by kingsnake » Sat May 21, 2011 10:14 am

No, I don't...gambling has never really interested me.
I've never even been to Vegas.

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fundtalker123
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Post by fundtalker123 » Sat May 21, 2011 10:17 am

Yes, I used fidelity.com to buy a little small cap value index

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nisiprius
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Post by nisiprius » Sat May 21, 2011 10:26 am

No.

I'm not very interested. Or, at least, I don't think I am. My attitude is like that of Bill Bryson, who describes a slot machine as a laborious game in which you try to get rid of a bucket of quarters, but it's like the task if Sisyphus: just when you are getting close, it suddenly dumps back a bunch of quarter back at you and the toil resumes. He talks about passing a slot where someone had just hit a jackpot and thinking "that poor woman, it's going to take her hours to get rid of all that."

I attended a software convention once that was held in Reno, in a casino hotel, where you had to walk through the casino to get to the room elevators. I pondered the question of whether I should try playing the slots just because I never had tried. I decided not do, because it was a lose-lose situation. Either I'd hate it, in which case it would have been a waste of time and money, or I'd discover that I love it, a far worse outcome.

Reno's the only place I've been where I could not find a bookstore within walking distance of the hotel.
Last edited by nisiprius on Sat May 21, 2011 10:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

centrifuge41
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Post by centrifuge41 » Sat May 21, 2011 10:26 am

Nah, I try to avoid activities with negative expected values :)

But I do know some people that were good enough at poker to have a positive expected value with reasonably contained variance. Well, online poker is shut down now, so there goes a revenue stream.

chaz
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Post by chaz » Sat May 21, 2011 11:19 am

I have some CapOpp.
Chaz | | “Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons." Woody Allen | | http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

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FabLab
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Post by FabLab » Sat May 21, 2011 11:26 am

I have a strong preference for my $$ to remain that way :D
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mcblum
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Post by mcblum » Sat May 21, 2011 11:28 am

Back in 1963, slots were legal in the shore towns of the Chesapeake Bay.
I worked a summer job at a camp near North Beach and, once a week we used to go in to eat crabs and drink beer. Crabs were 2-3 dollars a dozen!
I played the slots and lost most of the time but, once, I hit the jackpot for $6 in nickels. I was rich!! This was the last time I ever won anything. I have tried slots on cruises but lost about $20, my limit, every time.
I'll stay away from horses, football and B-ball pools
all the best Marty

Sam I Am
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Post by Sam I Am » Sat May 21, 2011 11:34 am

Message deleted.
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Imperabo
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Post by Imperabo » Sat May 21, 2011 12:47 pm

nisiprius wrote:
Reno's the only place I've been where I could not find a bookstore within walking distance of the hotel.


You were obviously looking for the wrong kind a bookstore.

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gotherelate
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Post by gotherelate » Sat May 21, 2011 1:00 pm

Probably my biggest vice is playing poker on line. But I use only play money, and I don't mean the kind of play money that some Bogleheads use to invest in individual stocks. I mean really "play" money. I am working on my fourth million (having made and lost two million already).
-Grandpa | I'd rather see where I'm going than see where I've been.

FireProof
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Post by FireProof » Sat May 21, 2011 1:22 pm

I use to play poker online, before the DOJ shut us down. But that is a game of skill with a positive expected value if you are decently skilled and disciplined - one of my talented friends made over $700,000 (building up from a bankroll of a few hundred). Sports betting, on the other hand, seems like a fools game, and the efficient marketers on this forum surely agree.

Atilla
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Post by Atilla » Sat May 21, 2011 1:34 pm

I have a Trade King account holding only individual stocks. So far so good. :D

warbucks
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Re: Do Bogleheads Gamble Online?

Post by warbucks » Sat May 21, 2011 1:39 pm

Lon wrote:Do you bet the races, boxing, ball games?


No. The only wager that has ever interested me is that of Blaise Pascal.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pascal%27s_Wager

scrabbler1
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Post by scrabbler1 » Sat May 21, 2011 1:56 pm

Never had the least interest in it. Other than a few office lottery ticket pools I rarely joined, I have never gambled.

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dandan14
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Post by dandan14 » Sat May 21, 2011 2:14 pm

I play poker online from time to time. I put $30 in an online poker account a few years ago (after a discussion with my wife). I think I still have about $20 in there. :-) Cheap fun.

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Scott S
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Post by Scott S » Sat May 21, 2011 4:07 pm

nisiprius wrote:My attitude is like that of Bill Bryson, who describes a slot machine as a laborious game in which you try to get rid of a bucket of quarters, but it's like the task if Sisyphus: just when you are getting close, it suddenly dumps back a bunch of quarter back at you and the toil resumes. He talks about passing a slot where someone had just hit a jackpot and thinking "that poor woman, it's going to take her hours to get rid of all that."

Love that guy! :lol:

Closest I come to online gambling is my Zecco account. And for that, it hasn't yet had the decency to go way up or way down...

- Scott
Last edited by Scott S on Sat May 21, 2011 4:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
My Plan: * Age-10 in bonds until I reach age 60, 50/50 thereafter. * Equity split: 50/50 US/Int'l, Bond split: 50/50 TBM/TIPS. * Everything over 2 months' expenses gets invested.

tim1999
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Post by tim1999 » Sat May 21, 2011 4:24 pm

I once tried one of the "online casinos" with a very small amount of money. I found it to be very boring and I never did it again.

I do enjoy gambling in real casinos, and go perhaps once a month.

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SecretAsianMan
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Post by SecretAsianMan » Sat May 21, 2011 4:36 pm

I was a (mostly online) professional poker player for 3 years in the mid-2000s. Great job to have in your mid-20s. Lived abroad, traveled 3-4 months a year, and saved money for law school.

SAM

xerty24
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Post by xerty24 » Sat May 21, 2011 5:37 pm

Individual stock picks seem like enough gambling for me.

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stemikger
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Post by stemikger » Sat May 21, 2011 5:59 pm

IMHO if you are a real Boglehead you only will do it for entertainment purposes and if you win it is the icing on the frugal cake.

However, if you truly are a Boglehead you would never buy a loterry ticket on a daily or weekly basis.

SP-diceman
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Post by SP-diceman » Sat May 21, 2011 7:29 pm

I’ve placed bets in a real casino, real horse track, real dog track.

I don’t like the idea of on-line, seems too easy to rig.
I could imagine a roulette wheel, a computer calculates all the bets,
than spits out the number that makes the casino the most money.

(true by accident it could be my number, but it just seems like
something I don’t need or want to deal with)


Thanks
SP-diceman

scouter
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Post by scouter » Sat May 21, 2011 7:49 pm

Couple of casino stories:

I saw a guy win $5000 on a slot machine. Bells were ringing, lights flashing, everyone slapping him on the back. After the change girl paid him and the excitement was dying down, I heard him say to his buddy, "Well, we're almost back to even again!"

I was walking out of a casino when I heard a lot of excitement, went back and saw an elderly woman had won a Cadillac which was hanging in the air over a bank of "progressive" slot machines. Again, lots of noise and a crowd gathered while the manager gave her the keys and told her she could pick up the car in the morning. I was curious so I kept watching. After everyone drifted away, she started playing the machine again! There was NO big jackpot left to win, but she was wound up and didn't know what else to do with herself.

I've always had a hunch that casinos could set even odds and still make a profit. People just can't seem to quit when they're winning, they tend to quit when they're out of money or too tired.

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muddyglass
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Post by muddyglass » Sat May 21, 2011 8:02 pm

never been interested in poker, casinos, lottery, racing dogs/horses, betting on sporting events, etc.

buying 25 shares of raytheon stock last month was the first time in my life i ever gambled!

BruDude
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Post by BruDude » Sat May 21, 2011 8:56 pm

Used to play poker until George Bush took care of that...

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Boglenaut
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Re: Do Bogleheads Gamble Online?

Post by Boglenaut » Sat May 21, 2011 9:03 pm

Lon wrote:Do you bet the races, boxing, ball games?


Absolutely never.

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Rob5TCP
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Post by Rob5TCP » Sat May 21, 2011 9:18 pm

No sports, lottery, or AC or LV. But about 1-2% of my portfolio are stocks I buy/sell. Actually ended up doing ok because of gold/silver. But, that is unlikely to be repeatable. The rest of my stock investments, not so great.

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norookie
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Post by norookie » Sat May 21, 2011 9:51 pm

:D a bit. :D
" Wealth usually leads to excess " Cicero 55 b.c

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bottlecap
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Post by bottlecap » Sun May 22, 2011 12:07 am

I would play poker if it it were legal online. I'm not interested in games of pure chance, however.

I guess I should be thankful my government protects me from myself, while it sells me lottery tickets twice a week.

JT

I'd also bet at the horse track, even though I wouldn't expect to win. I wouldn't bet online or off-track, though.

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joe8d
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Post by joe8d » Sun May 22, 2011 12:30 am

I never gamble.No lottery,no casino's,not even football pools.
All the Best, | Joe

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BTDT
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Post by BTDT » Sun May 22, 2011 8:02 am

No Lotto, No sport-pools, no casinos, no online gaming etc .

Stocks and bonds are a big enough gamble for me
If past history was all that is needed to play the game of money, the richest people would be librarians.

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stratton
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Re: Do Bogleheads Gamble Online?

Post by stratton » Sun May 22, 2011 4:02 pm

Lon wrote:Do you bet the races, boxing, ball games?

Penny stocks are gambling! :twisted:

There are a few BH that "invest" in those. :shock:

Paul
Last edited by stratton on Sun May 22, 2011 8:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
...and then Buffy staked Edward. The end.

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FrugalInvestor
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Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun May 22, 2011 4:48 pm

Years ago I purchased a few lottery tickets, probably ten total. On the occasion that we end up in Vegas we allow ourselves $20 apiece to play the slots or something. When I was a kid we sometimes played penny ante poker. That's about the extent of it for me.

I don't find gambling to be entertaining and would prefer to spend my recreation money on something that is. I also feel it hurts many of those who can least afford it so just have an aversion to it.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

Valuethinker
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Re: Do Bogleheads Gamble Online?

Post by Valuethinker » Mon May 23, 2011 3:28 am

Lon wrote:Do you bet the races, boxing, ball games?


? is internet gambling not illegal in the USA?

UK gambling firms have been shut down, and their directors arrested in the USA, for allowing US residents to gamble on their sites.

Beantown85
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Post by Beantown85 » Mon May 23, 2011 10:00 am

No, never online.

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SpecialK22
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Post by SpecialK22 » Mon May 23, 2011 10:09 am

I believe what is illegal is for banks to transfer funds to online casinos or to take bets from US citizens. I don't believe placing a bet online is explicitely illegal.

Sriracha
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Post by Sriracha » Mon May 23, 2011 10:31 am

Online, never.

When I lived in NY, I'd go to Saratoga once or twice each August and lose a little money on the horses, but that's about it.
Don't reach for yield.

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Post by Easy Rhino » Tue May 24, 2011 3:15 am

A few years ago i was active on playing in online casinos, solely to exploit the various kinds of marketing bonuses (i.e. "free cash") that were available to players. The right ones could be turned into positive expectation if you were selective and played them right. It was fairly lucrative, although it could be time consiming (where you have to play 2,000 hands of blackjack before you can cash out, etc.).

Haven't done it much recently due to time constraints and lack of interest. Plus, the casinos gets smarter at limiting the exploitation, and the legality gets dodgier and dodgier (mainly UIGEA).

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RaleighStClaire
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Post by RaleighStClaire » Tue May 24, 2011 9:43 am

BruDude wrote:Used to play poker until George Bush took care of that...


Same with me. October 2006 was a sad time.
Where's that red one gonna go?

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RaleighStClaire
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Re: Do Bogleheads Gamble Online?

Post by RaleighStClaire » Tue May 24, 2011 9:46 am

Valuethinker wrote:
Lon wrote:Do you bet the races, boxing, ball games?


? is internet gambling not illegal in the USA?

UK gambling firms have been shut down, and their directors arrested in the USA, for allowing US residents to gamble on their sites.


If you are American or in the USA you are not playing poker online anymore, that's for sure. It's basically impossible. The sites have completely stopped any American to play and forced them to cash out all of their money.

The general consensus among online poker players seems to be hope that this leads towards legalization and regulation of online poker in America. www.harraspoker.com perhaps?
Where's that red one gonna go?

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TrustNoOne
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Post by TrustNoOne » Tue May 24, 2011 11:27 am

Why play small time games like online poker, sports betting, etc when you can lose some serious money with 3x short etfs?

Lumpr
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Post by Lumpr » Tue May 24, 2011 11:57 am

TrustNoOne wrote:Why play small time games like online poker, sports betting, etc when you can lose some serious money with 3x short etfs?


Because you are more likely to have an edge playing poker or sports betting?

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Random Musings
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Post by Random Musings » Tue May 24, 2011 2:08 pm

I've been known to put $1 in the Powerball when it gets over $100MM. If I'm in the area or remember to do so.

Which means not too often. But I'm livin' on the edge.

RM

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CrankyManager
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Post by CrankyManager » Tue May 24, 2011 2:20 pm

My first ever gambling experience saw me take a ziplock bag full of nickels and dimes to a casino. I won a little change after putting in a few coins, and quit. Haven't played since.

I could see myself playing card games if I had a longer attention span. I'd rather be doing anything rather than sitting and playing cards, however.

We make occasional family/friend trips to a nearby casino town. I go and play arcade games and pinball with the kids. I know I'll never see the money again, but at least there's zero expectation of "winning" anything.

Like Random Musings, I have been known to spend $1 or sometimes as much as $2 if I notice the Powerball is over $100MM.

I'm painfully dull.
"Does not Dionysius seem to have made it sufficiently clear that there can be nothing happy for the person over whom some fear always looms?" -- Cicero

Beantown85
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Post by Beantown85 » Tue May 24, 2011 2:28 pm

Random Musings wrote:I've been known to put $1 in the Powerball when it gets over $100MM. If I'm in the area or remember to do so.

Which means not too often. But I'm livin' on the edge.

RM


I do the same, and I believe if the jackpot is high enough your expectation on a $1 ticket is actually a little higher than $1.00. However, I never do this online.

Lumpr
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Post by Lumpr » Tue May 24, 2011 2:49 pm

I cann't remember the math exactly, but if I recall correctly, it is pretty difficult for lottery tickets to be +EV because of (a) the possibility of multiple winners splitting the pot and (b) as the jackpot increases more tickets are sold for each drawing.

I didn't read this completely, but it seems to basically address the point Can the Lotto be +EV.

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Random Musings
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Post by Random Musings » Tue May 24, 2011 3:10 pm

Lumpr wrote:

I cann't remember the math exactly, but if I recall correctly, it is pretty difficult for lottery tickets to be +EV because of (a) the possibility of multiple winners splitting the pot and (b) as the jackpot increases more tickets are sold for each drawing.


I vaguely recall that if one could live "forever", it made sense to play the Lotto (or Powerball) if the jackpot got to $350MM or so. However, since I'm not planning to live forever, I live on the edge.

And yes, I don't do this on-line. Sorry about being off-topic.

RM

jodydavis
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Post by jodydavis » Tue May 24, 2011 3:13 pm

Played online poker for about a year back in the mid-2000s, strictly low-limit and for entertainment. Did it mostly to see if I could make money. Made only minimal amounts over and above the rake, although I probably didn't play enough hands to be very certain. Made lots of money on the free bonuses, though. These days, my gambling is limited to an annual trip to Vegas with my buddies.

Oddly enough, I found it really helpful for my investing. Playing poker (at least limit poker) is largely about knowing the odds, making the right decisions, and ignoring short-term fluctuations (e.g. bad beats), confident that in the long run, you will make money. Riding out a bear market was, strangely, a lot easier than dealing with a long run of bad cards and bad beats.

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