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The price is the name given to the odds on a bet which are being offered by a bookmaker. By studying the odds it is possible to make two calculations. The first of these is how much profit will be made from a particular stake if the bet proves to be successful. The second is how likely the bookmaker thinks it is that the outcome in question is going to occur. In sports such as horse racing, the odds will shorten as more bets are placed on a particular horse, in some instances becoming odds on, which means that at odds of 1/4, for every £4 bet, £1 will be paid in winnings.
The price should play a large part in determining whether a bet is worth placing or not, particularly when used in conjunction with research into other factors such as current form or, in team sports, starting line-ups. In the vast majority of cases the price will be displayed either as decimal odds or fractional odds. The following are examples of how each kind of price works for a single bet placed to win:
If fractional odds of 12/1 are given against a horse winning a race, and the horse comes in first, then a stake of £7 will produce winnings of £91 which, minus the original stake, is a profit of £84.
If decimal odds of 3.75 are given against Tottenham Hotspurs beating Juventus in the Champions League, and they go on to do so, then a stake of £10 will produce winnings of £37.50 (10×3.75). It should be noted that, as is the case with all prices given in as decimal odds, this pay-out will include the original stake – £10 in this case – and so represents a profit of £27.50.