Online horse racing bettors less likely to gamble after a losing day

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  • It sounds like common sense, but a study just confirmed that a horse racing bettor tends to walk away from betting if he lost the day before.


    A new study from the University of Eastern Finland shows that a bettor will tend to stay away from bets, up to 27%, after a day of loss after winning or breaking even. The study examined how losing or winning the previous day in betting can also predict when it will return at the next horse race to bet online. The study also found that high wins or losses on the previous betting day do not predict the timing of the next betting session.

    A typical online horse racing bettor appears to change their betting behavior based on the success of their previous betting day. Previous studies have shown that bettors tend to reduce their stakes after a losing day. We have now been able to show that a typical bettor, too, stays away from betting longer after losing, says Tuomo Kainulainen, researcher at the University of Eastern Finland.

    Published in Journal of Gambling Studies, the study used individual-level gambling account data. Researchers analyzed the betting behavior of more than 9,000 people in Finland who placed bets on the online betting platform of Finnish horse betting operator Fintoto in August 2012.

    No difference was noted in the betting behavior of women and men after a losing day. A typical online horse racing bettor in Finland is a 51-year-old man who lives in an urban area and places a bet approximately every four days. The average betting volume per day was 50 dollars and the average net loss per day was 14 dollars.

    The study also looked at whether different groups of punters identified in the data had a different reaction to a losing day. The researchers analyzed the association of individual characteristics, such as age and gender, with the next betting session after a losing day. They found that after a losing day, inexperienced bettors are likely to stay away from betting longer than experienced bettors.

    Although women participate in online horse betting less frequently than men, we find no difference in how these two groups change their behavior after a losing day, Kainulainen points out. The researchers found differences in how different groups of punters reacted to a losing day, but these differences were very small. The study suggests that all bettors, regardless of their individual characteristics, are likely to stay away from betting longer after a losing day.

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