They may instruct a market-maker to limit stakes because a punter has a history of winning on a particular market. They may even suggest that the quote be moved if he backs a team on a certain market. If only we knew such information ourselves it would be invaluable—and that is why every punter should be strict with themselves when it comes to keeping records. Peter Oborne, political editor of the Spectator and a big spread bettor, once said that he had lost less than a small house, but more than a large car on the spreads.


The main problem comes from the volatility of spread betting and that requires considerable care and attention when it comes to your staking plan. If your initial thought is ‘what is the worst that can happen?’, then you should at least keep the house. Always have at the back of your mind the adage that the worst-case scenario is the worst-case scenario and that it can and does happen. Some markets are clearly more volatile than others.


Total goals in football is a relatively tranquil market. If the opening quote is for about three goals, then realistically the worst total make-up is going to be about eight. Total number of runs in a five match cricket Test series, might be quoted at 5,000 runs, but the make-up could easily be in the hundreds either side. Obviously, you would not put nearly the same stake on the two bets.