Popular among gamblers, Labouchere is a negative progression betting system commonly used in roulette even money propositions. Casinos also use it in baccarat and blackjack. Unlike the simple progression systems, Labouchere is more complex system based on an equal probability of two events, whereby a player increases stakes after a loss.
The theory behind is to be able to recover big losses with a small number of wins. Developed by Henry Labouchere, it has also received other names as the Cancellation system, the Split Martingale or the American Progression. However, unlike the Martingale that aims to recover losses with a single win, Labouchere does so with multiple wins. A player has to set a winning goal and has a chance to reach his goal if he wins almost half of the bets placed.
The player first bets on a number of units, allocate a value to the units and decides how many of those he can risk. A sequence of numbers is written down, which predicts the total potential profit. For each bet, the stake equals the sum of the first and last number. Therefore, if your sequence was 4-5-6; the stake equals $10(4+6). When you win, you cross off numbers 4 and 6 from the sequence. A lost wager means you add the losing number to the sequence. For each following wager, the stake is always the combined amount of the last and first number. If only one number remains, then that is the amount of the stake. Winning that wager ends the cycle and the original sequence is re-invoked.
Pros and cons of the system
Labouchere does not require constant wins to meet the set winning goal. With the system, you are confident of at least winning a third of the times in the long run.
Labouchere is an interactive and interesting system that can be very addictive especially if you are not good at losing. A losing streak means the sequence gets longer and you keep making larger bets