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Edited by Neil Longley

Sport is an effective industry in which to empirically test theories of personnel economics, primarily because the employer-employee relationship in sport is much more visible and transparent than in almost any other industry. This book examines personnel economics within the context of the professional sport industry. The chapters are organized around the core functional areas of personnel economics and cover all aspects of the employment relationship in sport – from recruiting and selection, to pay and performance, to work team design.
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Edited by Neil Longley

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Brian Goff

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Brian Goff

“Sport has the power to change the world.” Sports Economics Uncut expresses this insight from Nelson Mandela, exploring sports as a fascinating mirror of the world and a powerful agent of change. In it, Brian Goff covers subjects ranging from the ebb and flow of racial discrimination, to inequality, law enforcement, managers and risky decisions, club membership, and politics. Much more than merely a review or synthesis, this book extends existing perspectives and explores provocative questions such as: how systematic is racial bias in pro sports today? Is all racial segregation in sports due to racial bias? How much are college athletes really worth, and is league parity really optimal? 
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Brad R. Humphreys, Jane E. Ruseski and Jie Yang

The question of the extent of complementarity between sports betting and spending on spectator sports viewing is addressed in this chapter using Canadian household spending data. They find that spending on betting and spending on spectator sports are indeed complementary. Intriguingly, they also find that betting and spending on sports participation are substitutes. This suggests that further deregulation of sports gambling in Canada could well lead to less physical activity and more sedentary life styles for Canadians.

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Edited by Plácido Rodríguez, Brad R. Humphreys and Robert Simmons

This unique book delves into a number of intriguing issues and addresses several pertinent questions including, should gambling markets be privatized? Is the ‘hot hand’ hypothesis real or a myth? Are the ‘many’ smarter than the ‘few’ in estimating betting odds? How are prices set in fixed odds betting markets? The book also explores the informational efficiency of betting markets and the prevalence of corruption and illegal betting in sports.
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Stephen Dobson and John Goddard

A recent popular development in sports betting markets is the emergence of in-play betting where gamblers can post bets online during a sporting contest. Betting products available for ‘live’ or in-play betting include the match result, the exact score and the identity of the next scorer. This market has shown spectacular growth for European football. In a novel contribution in this chapter, the authors investigate the efficiency of the in-play football betting market as applied to exact scores in the English Premier League over two seasons. They compare betting exchange implied probabilities with probabilities generated from a statistical model and find some discrepancies after key events, especially just after a goal is scored or a player is dismissed from the field of play.

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Jaume García, Levi Pérez and Plácido Rodríguez

In this chapter the authors pose the fundamental question of whether bookmaker probabilities offer superior predictions of match outcomes to bettors themselves. Their test case is Spanish football and the comparison gamblers are football pools bettors who play a game where they forecast match outcomes. The authors find, first, that there is a favourite-longshot bias in Spanish fixed-odds football results betting and second, bookmakers’ predictions outperform those of football pools bettors.

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Rodney Paul and Andrew Weinbach

A significant strand of literature on sports betting investigates how bettors and betting markets respond to winning streaks by players or teams. This literature began with basketball and refers to the ‘hot hand’ effect of in-form players and teams which suggests that bettors and/or bookmakers believe this streak will continue. Do gamblers benefit from backing a player or team that is on a winning streak or would they gain superior returns by assuming that the streak will end in the next game? In this chapter the authors test the ‘hot hand’ hypothesis in betting on Major League Baseball games. Interestingly, they find different results for bets based on the momentum of the team and on individual pitchers. Their results show that the baseball betting market believes in the ‘hot hand’ and there is potential for positive returns for gamblers when betting that a team’s hitting streak will end i.e. bettors would benefit from pursuing a ‘contrarian’ strategy. In contrast, wagering on pitchers with successful streaks delivers superior returns to bets against the streak.

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Plácido Rodríguez, Brad R. Humphreys and Robert Simmons