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## Five’s in Twenty-One

Counting cards in chemin de fer is a method to increase your chances of winning. If you’re very good at it, you may truly take the odds and put them in your favor. This works because card counters elevate their wagers when a deck rich in cards that are advantageous to the gambler comes around. As a general rule, a deck wealthy in 10’s is much better for the gambler, because the dealer will bust extra typically, and the player will hit a black-jack extra often.

Most card counters keep track of the ratio of good cards, or 10’s, by counting them as a one or a minus one, and then provides the opposite 1 or minus one to the low cards in the deck. Some systems use a balanced count where the number of reduced cards would be the same as the variety of 10’s.

Except the most interesting card to me, mathematically, would be the five. There had been card counting methods back in the day that included doing absolutely nothing much more than counting the quantity of fives that had left the deck, and when the 5’s were gone, the gambler had a huge benefit and would raise his bets.

A excellent basic system player is acquiring a ninety nine point five percent payback percentage from the casino. Every 5 that’s come out of the deck adds 0.67 per-cent to the player’s expected return. (In a single deck casino game, anyway.) That means that, all other things being equal, having one five gone from the deck offers a gambler a little benefit over the casino.

Having 2 or three 5’s gone from the deck will actually give the gambler a quite significant advantage over the betting house, and this is when a card counter will normally raise his wager. The difficulty with counting 5’s and absolutely nothing else is that a deck lower in 5’s occurs quite rarely, so gaining a major benefit and making a profit from that scenario only comes on rare situations.

Any card between two and eight that comes out of the deck improves the gambler’s expectation. And all 9’s. 10’s, and aces increase the casino’s expectation. But 8’s and nine’s have incredibly modest effects on the outcome. (An 8 only adds point zero one percent to the player’s expectation, so it’s generally not even counted. A 9 only has point one five per-cent affect in the other direction, so it is not counted either.)

Comprehending the effects the minimal and superior cards have on your expected return on a wager would be the first step in understanding to count cards and wager on pontoon as a winner.

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