Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Variability by month......

I think one of the more interesting pieces of analysis I’ve done on the blog was when I looked at the performance of the systems (it was the all Est system bets) and looked at how they do by month of the year. Obviously, individual months are a little too low level to do any real form of analysis and so I grouped the data into half years. I said the season was split Aug-Dec and then Jan-May. Although it’s not an exact split, it varies by league, it was the best I could do if I remember rightly and given I can get the results by month easy enough, it’s a nice way to split the results.

I had a quick read of the blog and I can’t actually find the analysis I did previously. No big deal as I’m updating it now but any long-term readers of the blog will be fully aware of the conclusions that were very clear from the analysis first time round.

In summary, the clear concusion was that the second half of the season was tougher for my systems to make a profit. I didn’t ever manage to fully understand why this would be the case but there were lots of ideas thrown around before about how many meaningless games you get close to season end and then you have teams concentrating on cup games and European games and so on.  Basically, the conclusion was that the first half of the season was the place to make money and since the systems went live, I’ve definitely found this to be the case. That was until of course, this season!

Anyway, the reason for this post is that someone contacted me to look at the performance again by season but in particular, to look at the split between Home and Away bets.

The hypothesis for this was that they believe that the second half of the season favours home bets and the first half of the season favours away bets. Now, I know from personal experience that I’ve thought this myself as in the first half of the seasons, it has tended to be the away bets making all the big profits but they tend to go off the boil and are replaced by the Home bets making money. I know last season the Homes started the season badly and this season, the Homes have been heavily loss making as I’ve been on the end of this myself in my own portfolio of systems as I stake more on Home bets than Away bets.

So, I’ve pulled together the following table. This shows the results summary for all Established System bets in total to keep it simple. I could obviously have chosen any subset of systems but if I stick with these systems, they at least have been around for 2.5 seasons now. At the end of the post, I’ve shown the performance by month for those who really want to study the results. 

The top table shows the performance for all bets, the second table shows the performance for Away bets and the bottom table shows the performance for Home bets.

I don’t need to spell out the results too much as they jump off the page I think but basically, you can see in the overall results that there is a clear bias of profitability towards the first half of the season. No surprise here as it backs up what I’ve done before and it’s the way I think about the systems myself.

For the Away bets, you can see the bias is much more than on all the bets and the results are very skewed towards the first half of the season. The first half of the season generates a 25.5% return whereas the second half of the season only generates a 11.8% return. This is a massive drop off and the first half of the season is more than twice as profitable as the second half.

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know what must happen with the Home bets then……..

Clearly, the Home bets are the complete opposite and the second half of the season is more profitable than the first half. A 22.5% profit in the second half of the season compared to a 15.9% profit in the first half of the season.

Why is all this relevant?

Well, if you look at the results so far in 2012/13H2 (which is only two weeks of January mind you), it does look like history is already starting to repeat itself. The Home bets have won back all the losses made in the first half of the season and Away bets are in a loss making position. Obviously, it’s still early days and if history does repeat itself over the next few months, the season isn’t going to improve too much for most of us as there are about 50% more Away bets than Home bets, so if Away bets are on a downturn and Home bets are improving, the overall results are going to be down!

On the bright side, one thing looking at this does suggest is that a lot of profit can be made in a 5-6 month spell. Therefore, although the first half of the season has been disappointing (a 2.5% return over 1,523 bets), it is only a small sample of bets in the overall scheme of things and it makes me chuckle that the first two weeks of January has generated almost as much profit as the first half of the season!

I always tend to finish these analysis posts saying so what?  Well, at the end of this season, we’ll now have 3 seasons of live results, thousands of live bets and if there is clear evidence of a trend such as this, even if we can’t explain it and there is no real reason for it, should we act upon it?

Knowing the results historically has always led me to believe that compounding stakes on my systems is never a good idea since the second half of the season tends to be worse than the first half and nothing in this analysis makes me change my mind.  However, for those of us playing higher stakes on Homes this season and cursing the losses in the first half of the season, I think there is a great deal of hope that things may get a little better sooner, rather than later.

For those following away bets predominantly or compounding stakes….strap yourself in for the ride!

Here's the full analysis by month.

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