Tech and Trends:- The online gambling boom has been much documented. From a standing start in 2003 the industry has rocketed to the point where it is now worth over $40 billion a year. And that figure is still growing.
But whilst most of that revenue is generated as a matter of pure leisure – riding on the back of sports events and casino-style games – there is a more serious side to the phenomenon as well. It is taking a while to catch on, but there is a growing interest in applying the same gaming instinct and applying it to more heavyweight matters.
Financial spread betting replaces the playing field or the card table with the world’s trading floors. That is, instead of betting on the outcome of a sporting event or a game of some sort, players bet against moves on the world’s trading markets. Shares, currencies and overall market fluctuations represent the moving pieces on which traders make their calls.
If conventional betting brings together a sporting interest and a keen appreciation of the numbers, financial spread betting is all about the numbers pure and simple. It is, in effect, gambling for grown-ups.
Reflecting that mature point of departure is the ‘spread betting’ ethos that one of the UK’s leading brands Tradefair specialise in. A spread bet means that for every pound wagered the bet wins or loses that stake multiplied by the number of points that a market moves. A £1 stake can translate into a £100 return very quickly. And with losses calculated on the same basis, it is not a game for the faint-hearted.
Tadefair’s comprehensive offering is an ideal first point of connection. It offers extensive tutoring as well as multiple platform technologies, ranging from a quick-hit smartphone app to a professional level suite of technical and market analysis tools that hosts 85 technical indicators, eight chart types and a wide range of different time-frames. These are delivered to an exceptionally high quality of usability and security.
What is so impressive about the Tradefair offering is the extent of its scope. You can bet on over 3,200 different markets – including commodities, indices, bonds, currencies and equities. Access to so many markets at any one time is a quite remarkable technical achievement in its own right. It is like having the entire City of London at your fingertips.
The decision to trade is more quick-fire than an investment in stock, or currency per se, and it has the added benefit of not incurring the same tax penalties. Instead, because all that is being wagered is the difference between the level of the market at one point in time against another, the transaction is remarkably streamlined. No dealing fees, no brokers and no tax to pay make this a particularly attractive proposition for the amateur investor.
The mechanism by which such trades are enabled is a ‘Contract for Difference’ – more commonly referred to as CFDs. And a key benefit of them is that they are equally adaptable for buying and selling – effectively betting on a stock to rise or fall.
The financial spread betting market borrows its terminology more from the dealing rooms of the city than the high street bookmaker, and it can take a while to get to grips with the subtleties of what is going on. With bets subject to sometimes dramatic variation it makes sense to take advantage of the major suppliers’ cashless ‘demonstration’ suites before committing to the market for real.
However, for those who are eager to get straight to the money, and for whom the vagaries of sport and games of chance are a distraction from the real business of generating a profit, financial spread betting offers a hugely immersive gaming experience. Courtesy of providers like Tradefair, and competitors such as intertrader.com and spreadex.com, ‘playing the markets’ has taken on a whole new meaning.