Tweaks to Betfair's Bet Matching Engine have had a dramatic effect on the Exchange and it's now easier than ever before to get a bet matched in more footy markets than ever before. It's called liquidity pooling and here's how it works...
"Liquidity has traditionally been a problem in the markets that aren't the most popular: it's easy to get a bet matched in Match Odds or Correct Score, but Draw No Bet and Double Chance, though really just alternative ways of betting on Match Odds, were left out in the cold. Now the money that is available in Match Odds surfaces in derivative markets as well."
If you've been paying close attention since the start of the year you might have noticed something interesting has been going on with football markets. If you'd ventured into the Double Chance market perhaps, you'd have noticed that the prices on offer were more competitive and that there seemed to be more money around than you'd seen previously. If you were interested in Asian Handicaps you might have noticed that it's getting busier with more money on more lines. This is all down to us improving the Bet Matching Engine behind the scenes, which allows us to recognise what you probably knew already: when two outcomes in different markets are actually the same bet.
What does that mean: two outcomes are actually the same bet?
If you bet on Chelsea to beat Man Utd in the Match Odds market you're backing them to win (or possibly you're laying Man Utd and the Draw). If you bet on Chelsea to win in the Draw No Bet market you're still backing them to win, albeit this time you're hedging slightly by getting your stake back if the teams draw. But both bets are for the same thing: a return on your money if Chelsea win.
Ok, so what's changed?
Previously, because those bets lived in different markets - either Match Odds or Draw No Bet - if you backed Chelsea in the Draw No Bet market those lay bets on Man Utd and the Draw in the match odds couldn't be used to match your bet. Now that the Bet Matching Engine can recognize the equivalence of the bets, it can make that match for you.
Why should I care?
Because it's easier than ever to get your bet matched. Liquidity has traditionally been a problem in the markets that aren't the most popular: it's easy to get a bet matched in Match Odds or Correct Score, but Draw No Bet and Double Chance, though really just alternative ways of betting on Match Odds, were left out in the cold. Now the money that is available in Match Odds surfaces in derivative markets as well. A consequence of that is the prices tighten up.
Will my bet get matched quicker if it's in a specific market?
No. We continue to match bets in the order they're received when a match becomes available. Bets in one market aren't given priority over bets in any other.
Give me an example?
Here's an easy one: in the double chance market you can back a selection called Home or Draw. That can now be matched in the Match Odds market with a back bet on the away side, Man Utd in our example above.