If you want a guaranteed way to make money, the best ways are tried and tested ways. In other words, you’ll need to have a job to have a guaranteed income. For most people, answering the question “Which is best, gambling vs trading?” isn’t going to change the importance of having a job, unfortunately.
But, if you’re the sort of person that walks on the wild side, who takes risks but stands up each time life knocks you down, then open to you is a host of moneymaking possibilities that the less adventurous don’t have.
By far, the two most popular money-spinners are gambling and trading.
They are high-risk pursuits, though. That means HUGE highs – people can make millions on the gambling circuits and billions on trading circuits – but MONUMENTAL losses too. Both can be the best and worst thing to happen to a person.
In this article, I’m taking an optimistic approach. Forget about the losses because I’m going to focus on the wins, and in particular, which one’s better gambling or trading. But first, a little advice: if you have an addictive-type personality, find other hobbies. Visit the gambling commission and if you show signs of a gambling problem, reach out for help. Right, enough of the righteousness, back to the point…
…Which Is the Best Bet? Gambling vs Trading
The first thing to note about the differences between gambling and trading is how they make you feel. Gambling is normally a short-term deal, even poker tournaments last a couple of days max.
Trading, on the other hand, can be both short-term and long term – sometimes traders can make bank in a few minutes, other times they play the long game, taking years to make their millions.
From this perspective, it’s your personality that decides which one’s best, gambling or trading. If you love the quick dopamine hit of instant gratification – and let’s face it, most of us do – then gambling is great fun. But if you’re the type of person who can hold back in the moment for potentially greater rewards in the future, then trading could offer you more of a thrill.
Basically, do you want lots of little dopamine hits that are easy to get right now, or do you want one big dopamine hit that requires a bit of effort but feels monumental?
But the thrill is only part of the story – you’re surely more interested in the Moolah! Which one will make you the most £££?
Can You Get Rich from Gambling?
Gambling encompasses such a huge range of wins, from £0.10 wins on the slots, to mega millions at the poker tournaments that it’s definitely possible to win big, it’s just not that likely.
The truth is that it’s rare to win big through gambling. The house ALWAYS wins in the end. Except for strategy games, like poker, gambling is a matter of luck for the most part – even poker has an element of luck.
Because luck is such an integral part of gambling, it will never be a lucrative way to make money.
However, one thing that it’s great at is accessibility. Practically anyone can gamble. There are simple games for those of us that aren’t strategic and there are strategy games for those of us who are. There are games to suit every budget – you can literally play for free with many online casinos initially, and once you start paying, can place bets for as little as £0.01.
Can You Get Rich from Trading?
There are similarities between trading and gambling, with some people claiming that they’re effectively the same. However, they do differ in one clear way: trading involves a skillset and a good understanding of how the markets work. There is much less of a reliance on luck.
Traders can draw on huge bodies of data to make informed decisions about current and long-term trends. Learning to trade is the same as learning any skill – some people have a natural ability to pick it up and some people will have to try harder.
If you have a rational and analytical mind, then you’ll find it relatively easy to pick up the basics…
…and when you do, the rewards can be enormous. Jesse Livermore made a whopping $100m from taking short positions just before the 1929 Wall Street Cash.
Sound good? Don’t be so quick to assume. Jesse Livermore committed suicide just 11 years later after losing his entire fortune.
Of course, it doesn’t have to take such a drastic turn. Investing amounts that you can reasonably afford to set aside, in long-term and secure investments, can bring a slow and steady return.
Which One Brings the Greatest Rewards?
Whether you choose to gamble or invest your money, the key is to only use money that you can reasonably afford to lose. You’ll need to spend time understanding the markets if you want to learn to trade (or use a financial adviser) and it’s not likely to be as fun as gambling.
Gambling will likely bring you some light entertainment and relief, but only if you set yourself a budget and play only with the money you can afford to lose.
Personally, I’d choose to gamble if I were looking for a few hours of entertainment. Trading I use for long-term investments and I leave the hard work up to the professionals (I put money in a pension).