January 2020 Report

After some reflection I have decided that the time has come to bolster cash reserves. This is largely because I am facing some uncertainty at work and it will be a relief to have some money to fall back on, if needed. Most of my emergency fund is tied up in matched betting accounts, which is sitting there fairly securely but it is not truly available at very short notice.

Whilst my contributions are still comparable with previous months, for the next few months money will be allocated into a mixture of regular savings and an easy access saving account. This includes a bonus that I am expecting this month.

I have two regular saving accounts, one with First Direct and one with M&S. I opened these at a time where the interest rate for both was 5% for a year, and shortly afterwards this rate was slashed. I can contribute a maximum of £550 per month into these, of which I take full advantage.

Summary of savings made this month:

  • £550 into regular savings
  • Roughly £200 into a current account (soon to be moved into an easy access saver account)

Having cash on hand is also useful in the case of a market downturn. Of course I have no idea whether the market will take a dip any time soon but it would be useful to have some cash waiting in the wings just in case!

Side Income

This month I made £460 from matched betting, which was a relief considering how much of a lousy start I had! From casino offers I made £314 even though for a short while I was in negative territory, and by the 15th January I only had only £3.80. Thankfully the month picked up and things got back on track. I was also helped by £146 profit on sports offers. As usual below is the cumulative profit of casino offers over the month compared with expected value.

The number of decent offers was much lower than usual for the first few weeks and many people on the matched betting forums were questioning whether this could be signalling the end. I’m not at this stage yet, although the last few months have been testing. I’m still getting by, doing a wide range of low-EV offers across many bookmakers and casinos.

While the good days have passed, there is still money to be made but the profit per day is surely decreasing. I typically do the daily offers that appear in my calendar and have done so over the last few years, which gives me a fairly good baseline to compare and test whether this is the case. Below is a chart of the number of offers I’ve completed over the last year and the average amount of EV taken per offer. Both show a gradual decline.

I’m not getting too worried yet, but it’s a timely reminder that the game is slowly changing and I will probably need to adapt to new offers and opportunities. This year I will try to take on some new strategies.

Other Business

Thankfully we’ve paid the car loan off now so we will now be able to put an extra £200 in the coffers every month. I’m also hopefully getting a bonus this month too, so I’ll be back on track and contributing to my ISA again before long.

I have an upcoming post where I outline my goals for the forthcoming year. Regular readers may have noticed a ‘reading plan’ list on my page, which is a hint to a reading goal that I have. I’m quite ambitious so I’m setting myself some strong targets this year!

Let me know how your January has been!

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