A sucker bet is a bet based on something other than expected return including:
- parlays: One bet ticket written with at least two wagers (all must win for the ticket to cash).
- teaser: A sucker wager that allows bettors to add and subtract points from posted odds.
- exotic: Any wager other than a straight bet or parlay (also referred to as a proposition or prop).
To calculate expected return, use the following formula: EXPECTED RETURN = POTENTIAL WINNING * PROBABILITY OF WINNING – POTENTIAL COST * PROBABILITY OF LOSING.
It is a bet where the odds of winning are significantly and clearly worse than the payout.
For example, the chances of correctly guessing the order of the final 3 cards of Faro is usually 1 in 4, yet the bet only pays 3:1. Taking insurance in Blackjack is also often considered a sucker bet.
Sucker bets are often created to offer higher payouts to offer the player a chance at “fast money” in exchange for a decreased chance of winning.
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