Financial Risks & Gambling With Your Money In Your 20s

by Martin

Don’t you love when you take a gamble with your money and it pays off greatly? Well I think we all do. The unfortunate part is that this rarely happens. Nobody ever brags about saving money. We all hope to win big money.

I had a completely different post lined up for today but various events over the last few days changed my mind as to what I wanted to write about. As a result I have two stories I would like to share with you guys, followed by a discussion.

I spent the weekend at Niagara Falls, a location known for partying and gambling. I have never stepped inside of a casino in my whole life. I went one day with my friends to check it out. I set a limit of $10 and yes the money was gone in less than 10 minutes. My friend on the other hand got lucky because he doubled his $40 on the first day. On the second day he felt confident and decided to gamble $100. Let’s just say he will never see that money again.

Before I went away I got my hair cut by my barber who happens to be a wise 70 year old man. He shared an interesting story with me that is summarized below:

When he was a young teenager he once went to gamble money on horses and he ended up winning a real nice chunk of change. He ran with a huge smile on his face to go brag to his father. His father shook his head and told him that “horse racing is for two types of people- kings and fools.”

All of these events got me thinking about the all of the twenty somethings out there that try to make money gambling and taking crazy financial risks. I mean in theory it’s a great idea because who wants to work 40 hours a week to earn a living? In reality, you will take many financial risks in your life, but gambling at the casino or on horse racing could be the riskiest.

Today there will be no morality advice, no preaching, just a thought provoking discussion.

Studenomics is not all about me giving you guys a final answer to accept. It’s about helping you guys come up with your own conclusions. I will just ask a few questions about gambling with your money followed by some thoughts.

Financial Risks.

You work hard for your money, so why take financial risks that could cost you all of your money within seconds?

If you work a job where you earn $10 an hour and you go to the casino to play $100 games, think about all of the work you put in to earn that money just to risk it. There are financial risk managers that are ready to explode right now during the weird economic times, so imagine how a bad day at the casino would make you feel.

Making Money Gambling a Reality?

Sure it would be great if gambling your money would consistently double it, but how many times has this happened to you?

Think of yourself and all of the people you go gambling with and now think about the amount of times you guys actually won a decent sum of money. Sure the number might seem slightly high at first but now think about all of the times you guys lost money. If the winnings are still high then maybe a career in gambling is perfect for you, but chances are the winnings are not greater than the losses.

Professional Gambling Success Stories.

If you could make lots of money from gambling, then why are there so few success stories?

Yes I know about the young full time poker players, but have you met anyone that is a successful full time gambler? I have actually met one man that played poker professionally for 20 years. He finally got out to work a normal job because the stress of not having a steady income got to him. The survivorship bias is really strong when it comes to professional gambling because the success stories are highlighted on television all the time, while the people that lost their homes to gambling are often ignored.

Are you big on taking risks? I’m a fan of starting a business and investing time because at least I’m in control. I hate not being in control.

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