Went to Solaire (PSE: BLOOM) with a few friends last night. Went home with some valuable gains.
Went to Solaire just to see it, being a 0.0000000000000001% shareholder and to somehow experience being in a casino. We obviously looked newbies in there last night.
Did not really go there expecting to win anything. And I didn’t. But with the few hours spent there, I also did not expect to have some realizations on gambling, investing, how they are worlds apart, and why Juan prefers to bet on the wrong side.
Choose Your Side
I would say majority of the tables were occupied last night. Maybe 75% full which I think bodes well for the business, Bloomberry, which is also a listed PSE stock. But I’m not sure if it also bodes well for the people playing in there and losing money by the minute. It’s their choice and their money anyway.
I’m sure a very small minority of the people last night went home with monetary gains. Me not included. The majority I hope at least went home satisfied at having spent time playing. For the thrill. For the experience. As they say, the house always wins.
So I’d rather invest in a casino stock than to gamble in one. I can play maybe for a couple of times, but the amount to gamble will be at least 100 times smaller than the amount I’ll be willing to invest in casino stocks.
Understanding The Game
The slot machines did not appeal much to me because I did not know how to play it, or maybe I did not know how I’ll win. I just know that wins are based on patterns created by random pictures, the chances of which I think are very very small. That’s it. So some people just kept on pressing buttons and spins and let their losses and some wins come. Random. Oh and poker too because again, I did not know how it works. Poor newbie.
The roulette appealed to me though because it looked easy to play. Random but more transparent on what happens in the game. You just place your bets on numbers or combinations and hope that the small white ball gives you winnings. At least in this one I understand whether I’m winning or losing. Oh and the wheel of fortune looked interesting too, again because it was simple enough to understand.
Not that knowing more of the game will tilt the odds in my favor. I was aware that knowing and not knowing did not carry much impact in me winning or losing. And that’s the sad reality in gambling. My odds of winning was still infinitely small even if I know how the game works. Even if I fool my self into strategizing. But still I found myself wanting to have some comfort in knowing that I know what I’m doing. That I had some level of control in my bets.
Gamble or Invest?
Good thing in stocks and other investments I have more control of what I’m doing and I can increase my chances. I wrote before that Filipinos prefer horserace and Lotto. Let’s add to that gambling in casinos. Betting on these may seem easier than investing. For most, maybe yes. No brainer but no gainer because no pain, no gain.
Gambling means letting chance and randomness decide whether you’ll win or lose. Quite easy I must say. Easy losses mostly, at times easy wins. In investing, more effort and education is needed but you have a good shot at winning. Juan can tilt the odds of winning to his favor.
Not much in casinos. You can only know so much then chance and randomness take it from there. In investments, the more you know and learn, the better your odds at winning. The less susceptible you are from randomness.
Juan’s Preferred Bet
So take your pick.
I experienced firsthand that investing in stocks is much easier than winning in a casino. Investing in a casino stock is better than betting on roulette or poker. There are instances that there were tens or maybe hundreds of chips on the table worth thousands, but after spinning the roulette, only a few chips will get to claim wins. The casino wins.
Oh and a friend tried his luck on slot machines, betting just PHP1 for every spin. With a small bet each time, he only had a bet on very few patterns, hence very small chances of winning. He already had more than 50 spins and he’s not won a peso. In 50 trades, Juan can already have a gainer, or better yet a bagger.
It’s really just for entertainment, not a quick rich scheme, just similar to watching movies. Oh and I lost PHP200 last night, same worth as a movie Haha! I’ll just aim to recover that from PSE:BLOOM. I got free parking and free hot chocolate anyway, so my losses last night are small.
Will I play again in a casino? Maybe. Seldom. For entertainment and friendship’s sake.
By the way, I’m not asking any Juan to buy PSE: BLOOM by tomorrow. Time your entries. But I’d say it’s a good stock to own for the long run. Especially since Juan prefers to gamble and let chance create his fortune.
Photo: Roulette wheel by HÃ¥kan DahlstrÃ¶m