SumGames - Blackjack (and how it compares to investing)
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     BlackJack is a relatively straightforward game in that given certain variables (like payouts, how many decks are used, and the specific rules on when the dealer hits) you can construct "basic" tables that show what action (hit, stand, split, or double down) has the highest expected return. Then optimal play is simply following the "basic" strategy. Any deviation from basic strategy reduces your expected return. You may of course do better, but the more hands you play, the higher your correlation will be with the statistical odds.

     There are some potential wrinkles in Blackjack. The main one is card counting. If you have the ability to count cards you can improve your odds by increasing bets when the odds are more in your favor based on what cards have been dealt. It's not illegal in Vegas to count cards, but it is apparently very risky for several reasons. Card counting is more likely to improve your odds with fewer decks. There have been plenty of attempts to gain unfair advantages in Blackjack, for instance by marking cards, or potentially having a dealer being a partner in crime (although casino's have engineered solutions around that).

     It's not uncommon to hear some blackjack terminology used in the investment business. "Double down" for instance is a common investment term, which refers to the option in Blackjack to double your bet and take one more card, which in some cases increases your expected return (for example when you have two cards totaling 11 and the dealer is showing a 6). Doubling down in investing usually means to double your investment (or active bet).

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