The role of a 'bookie', the common name of the person involved in bookmaking, is quite important in the world of gambling. The bookie is responsible for keeping track of all the bets in the game.
The bookie can take bets on any professional events - election, races, college sports. Bookmaking has been prohibited been prohibited in the past. Even now it is illegal in certain states. Its legal status being in controversy, the job is considered a shady one.
In Europe, licenses were required in the past by those who wished to bet or involve themselves in bookmaking. Now, the event is illegal and betting on the election results is quite popular in Europe. Almost all sports event attract wagers in the State, especially soccer.
Sports remain the evergreen area for betting and bookmaking. The bettors are usually young or middle aged people. Sports being an year round activity which is mostly unpredictable attracts a lot of bookmakers who are keen on making quick money.
A less likely, but extremely popular betting event is elections. Political election being a nation wide phenomenon attracts a lot of bets. Even papal elections have not been spared by this game of luck. As the authority of the office involved in the election increases, the number and the amount of wagers also show an increase.
Horseracing is one of the most popular wagering event. The fact that makes this event so popular among the bettors is its randomness. Even the most consistent of the winners stands a chance to loose the race. Other races like grey hound races also attract wagers. These are a few conventional areas popular for betting. But bookmaking can be involved in almost any event that lacks certainty. For example, bets can also be placed on whether it will snow on the Christmas day!
The bookie stands to profit by balancing the book i. e. making sure that he has equal number of bets for all eventualities, so that he does not run out of money. A threat to the bookmaker's business is betting exchanges. These are one to one bets where the persons choose to forgo the bookie while making bets. Few betting exchanges sites have also cropped up, which enable this affair while charging a commission out of the bet.
Betting, like any other job, is not devoid of corruption. Some bookmakers can invite bets and later siphon away the entire money. This is usually the case when one involves in illegal betting. The principle of caveat emptor is forcefully applicable here.
Bookmaking is a competitive industry, with everyone willing to make fast money. However, it does involve a certain amount of skill to balance the book and earn the maximum profit out of the entire event. In countries where bookmaking is banned, people resort to online bets which are equally simple and profitable. For those who involve in illegal betting, it is advisable not to indulge in it as a small mistake can land one in deep soup.