“Arbitrage”, con Gere y Sarandon, abre el festival de cine de San Sebastián

Según el comunicado de la organización, “Arbitrage” es un “tenso y seductor thriller sobre el amor y la lealtad en el mundo de las altas finanzas”, en el que Gere y Sarandon están acompañados por un reparto que incluye también a Laetitia Casta, Tim Roth, Brit Marling y Nate Parker.

La gala supondrá el regreso a San Sebastián de ambos actores, muy recordados en el festival por haber sido galardonados en pasadas ediciones con sendos Premios Donostia en reconocimiento a toda su carrera: Richard Gere en la 55 edición del Festival en 2007 y Susan Sarandon en la 43 edición en 1995.

Según ha informado hoy la organización del Zinemaldia en una nota, la proyección del filme tendrá lugar en la gala de inauguración del certamen, en lo que será la “premiere europea” de la producción estadounidense “Arbitrage”.

La nota del Zinamaldia explica que “Arbitrage” supone el debut en el largometraje de ficción del escritor y director Nicholas Jarecki, joven talento que saltó a la fama gracias a su libro “Breaking In: How 20 Film Directors Got Their Start”, publicado en 2002.

Jarecki ha dirigido también el documental “The Outsider”, ha escrito la adaptación para la pantalla de la novela de Bret Easton Ellis “The Informers” y ha producido el documental de James Toback Tyson, que obtuvo un Premio Especial del Jurado en el Festival de Cannes en 2008.

San Sebastián (España) –  La película “Arbitrage”, protagonizada por Richard Gere y Susan Sarandon, inaugurará el próximo 21 de septiembre la Sección Oficial a concurso de la 60 edición del Festival Internacional de Cine de San Sebastián (norte de España).

Betting On Oil – CBS News

“It’s very simple,” Hennessey explains. It takes a lot of guesswork and speculation is abound. People were worried prices would go up because of the conflict, but it wasn’t effecting the price of oil. In essence, you are taking a guess on what the price of oil will be in a month, two months, up to 30 months down the road. “I think it is very dangerous to kind of play the oil game and bet on where the price is going to be,” Hennessey warns. “You can, however, bet on the professionals that do it.”

Falling oil prices may signal not just a good time to invest in a new tank full of gas but also in oil itself. “These are things you have to think about when you are investing in oil,” advices Hennessey.

For additional and more extensive investing and personal finance content from SmartMoney.com, click here.

by Jenn Eaker

Copyright 2006 CBS. But do you know what it takes to bet the markets on crude? Ray Hennessey, editor of Smartmoney.com offers some advice that might fuel your interest.

A lot of people have heard about investing in oil on the stock market, but aren’t too sure where to start or what to do. You take into consideration outside effects on the price like hurricane season and the war in the Middle East. So you are betting on futures, not stocks.”

In the end, supply and demand always wins when it comes to betting on oil prices, he says. “What you had here was demand going down. The Middle East war is a good example. “Here in the US we aren’t using as much oil as we need to.” This was why the higher prices people were predicting turned out to be wrong.. “You are betting on a future price. That’s why we’ve seen oil prices come down,” Hennessey points out. All rights reserved.

You can trade oil through trading in the oil pits, oil exchange-traded funds, which are like stocks, or you can actually bet on the Exxons of the world and get your dividends that way

Chinese Side By Side UTV

 This is not the typical ATV four wheeler you are accustomed to driving around the trails and in the woods.  It is different.  I would like to share some information about them with you, including the price you will pay compared to major brands, where you will find them for sale, and some details to help you decide if they are right for you.

700cc:  In general, you will be able to do heavy work, including plowing larger areas and towing heavier loads.

400cc:  This is a very versatile size.  They are generally fast enough to keep you satisfied on the trails, generally being able to go around 40 miles per hour, but not the 60 plus that is often claimed.  While not overly powerful, it would have sufficient power for more substantial work, including plowing small areas, like a city driveway.  Some are carbureted and others are fuel injected.

You will find there are tons of different options available for kids and adults.  I would like to share some of the most common sizes with you now, so you can determine what will work the best for you.

They are pretty cheap compared to the major makers.  The little kids ones can be found for under 1000 dollars new, while the 400cc models will run $3000 or $4000, depending on what you buy.  For the larger models, you will pay in range of $6000, but it is going to vary greatly by manufacturer and options.

Kandi:  A relative newcomer, they make several different sizes, with 250cc and smaller being their main niche.  Reviews are mixed for this brand, which is quite common with any ATV manufacturer, including the major ones like Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, and Arctic Cat.

90cc:  You won’t find many in this size, but there are some out there. Speeds are generally around the 60 mile per hour range, with some variance.  The difference in fuel efficiency when compared to 500cc models is minimal.

Chinese UTV Side by Side ATV Manufacturers

Bigger Options:  You will find 800cc and 1000cc models in Chinese UTV and side by side 4 wheelers.  Most will be four wheel drive.  Many will be capable of driving on sand dunes and over very rough terrain.  You will have plenty of power for almost all your reasonable work needs.

Kazuma:  This one might be your best bet.  Kazuma ATV’s were one of the first Chinese made ones on the market and they have been around for over a decade now.  I have purchased two Kazuma four wheelers and a RedCat (same thing) over the years and was very happy with them.  The UTV models are priced right and very cheap compared to major makers.

150cc:  You can find these in adult sizes.  Do not expect to get anywhere near the speeds promised from most sellers.  Many will claim top speeds of over 40 miles per hour, but most will not deliver more than 30.  Still, it is a good size for riding and very light yard and farm work.

What Size Is Right?

How Much Are They?

This is not a full list by any means.  There are at least dozens of different companies that make these from China and they are ever-changing.  The list below represents some of the companies that you will find referenced the most.

If possible, try to buy Chinese side by side UTV’s that have parts that are compatible with major makers, or are readily available, just in case repairs are needed.  In addition, you want to compare the price to the youth Polaris RZR models, to make sure you don’t pay as much for an off brand as you would for the real deal.  They should always be priced much cheaper than the major makers.  If they are not, I personally do not think they are worth the risk or the reduced resale value.  If they are priced well under, it might be a good option for kids and youth riders.

500cc:  This is another very good size to consider.  It will have a substantial improvement over the 400cc models, so it can be used for snowplowing bigger areas and for heavier work.  Many of the major makers use this as their benchmark size because it is so popular.

Are They Worth It?

BMS:  They make several sizes ranging from kids to adult models.  They have been around for several years now, so they are one of the longer lasting brands you will find in the market.

Maybe.  It really depends on what you are looking to accomplish.  Most seasoned ATV and UTV riders prefer the major makers for reliability and parts availability for repairs.  This is not to say that Chinese UTV and side by side four wheelers are not good enough.  In fact, some people prefer them because they use them only for light work and riding.  With a cheap price, it might make sense for you to buy one.  As you search for a Chinese side by side UTV, you really want to do as much comparison shopping as possible.

Linhai:  The biggest thing they have going for them is their motors.  They are pretty well made for a Chinese UTV side by side ATV for sale, and are priced very well.  This one is a good one to check out.

.  It is for small kids only, without anywhere near enough power or room for small adults to use.  It is a good size for a very small child that is just learning to ride.

Kids China UTV Considerations

250cc:  This one is generally good enough for light yard work and has enough power for pulling small loads.  Some of these Chinese UTV models are 4 wheel drive.  They generally do not have enough power for substantial hauling or work, including plowing.

Is a Chinese side by side UTV right for you or your kids?  Maybe; it all depends on your specific needs and who will be riding it

Richard Gere Interview on 9/11, New Movie ‘Arbitrage’ Video

Mid life. It is getting such great reviews all across the country. One of the things you get into, are the masters of the universe, also try to create their own moral universe. ? The land of the free and the home of the brave ? a bell tolls. You knew nothing? I knew nothing until I got there because I had the radio off. And everyone was okay. Susan sarandon. He’s not quite a billionaire. It’s just filled with love and affection. Just like today. How does it feel to get the lifetime achievement awards? It’s a little premature. The festivals that I’ve been to. But make the same kind of moral bad decisions. They started to tell me what was going on. You know, at the peak of your power right now. I forgot this was the 11th until this morning. And in business we can be this, at home we can be this. And everyone is stunned. You remember, it was the most beautiful day. Absolutely. He’s wealthy, yeah. Were you in washington then? I was here. And I come into this retreat that’s on a lake. The unhappiness. But on the inside, your world seems to be crashing in on you. She says one of the things you pull off here in the character, is everyone is watching this thing, knowing at some level, your character’s a very bad guy. I left like 7:00 in the morning. The cell wasn’t working. One of them is your wife. It recalls the bernie madoff scandal. The movie’s going to be a big hit. Yeah. That moment seems so fresh. I left early in the morning. Like san sebastian, the whole town, the whole region comes out. How do you think I’ve tolerated all this? Tolerated? What about me? What about the complaining. You have to be of a certain age and they start giving you this stuff. I don’t know if he’s a billionaire, by the way. You play a wall street titan, a benevolent billionaire on the outside. “Arbitrage” comes out friday. Thank you for sharing that. I was here in new york. This guy makes very bad decisions. If you really look at the film, there’s nobody in this film that doesn’t make some bad decisions. I finally got through to the family. The wonderful, charities. But these are the dinosaur awards. You know, she’s gotten very comfortable with the lifestyle. This is something ripped out of the headlines. I was driving up to massachusetts. Yes, the charities. Take sure your family is okay. Especially the european ones. You know, when we made the movie, bernie madoff was kind of the archetype of everybody’s idea of corruption, and money, funds, greed, and all that. And now, we’re seeing all these bankers and fund managers, who are more like us. And we remember the victims of those attacks, 11 years ago today. I’ve had close friends come up to me who were really angry with me because they were rooting for the guy. It’s hard not to get caught up in that, richard. I think europeans are — the whole town comes out. I couldn’t call back home. It was such a beautiful day. If you look at her actions and where she’s coming from. How do you think I pay for them? She wanted to cut that scene because I listed 50 things. And our other relationships. The trainers. Our actions, our thoughts, our morality, resonates through every part of our lives. The shopping. Richard, thank you very much.

Transcript for Richard Gere on 9/11, New Movie ‘Arbitrage’. Also getting honored, I saw at the zurich film festival. They’re all connected. So, three hours later, I’m up there. That’s what everybody was doing that day. By the time, the movie was released, it had gone past bernie madoff, who was obviously a very sick man. And it was such a beautiful day. The movie is not easy. I didn’t even want the radio on. It doesn’t work that way. One thing about this movie, but people think — you and I and probably the 400 people who are here, we think we can compartmentalize our morality. But you’re also rooting for him. But it’s very nice. I was making too good of a case. Everything. Let’s show a little of that. The phone wasn’t working. It’s very generous and very loving. From the cops. I was on my way to a retreat up in massachusetts. Although, as you say, no. The drinking. I don’t know what’s going on. Talking to my producer, kate, about this early this morning. They’re more normal people, certainly living at a different stratosphere. And we’re back, now, in the studio, with our next guest, richard gere.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

Test Text1 plain On this 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, we pause, now, to remember that moment, when the first plane hit the world trade center. I do want to move on to your movie. We had to pull some out

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Research and Markets: Research Report – Global Online Gambling & Betting Market 2014


majority of Western European countries have some laws in place to

channel online gambling and betting. However, offshore gambling websites

are popular among Brazilian gamblers, who spend several hundreds of EUR

million annually on offshore sports betting sites.

- 888 Holdings

About Research and Markets

- Betfair Group

Italy has one of the most advanced regulatory arrangements regarding

online gambling in Europe. In

South Africa, online gambling awaits legalization in 2014.

Product Information:

DUBLIN–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Research and Markets (http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/pwjr2j/global_online)

has announced the addition of the “Global

Online Gambling & Betting Market 2014″ report to their


Online gambling and betting is spreading in the Asia-Pacific region. In the USA, online gambling is legal only in three states

and in many Asian countries gambling and betting is allowed only in

casino resorts.

In North America, online gambling was legalized in three US states by

early 2014, with online gambling revenues surging to millions in the

first months of legal operation.

Online gambling is only starting to emerge in Africa. This ensures that the

content of the original studies is correctly interpreted.

The major trends in online gambling and betting globally are mobile and

social gambling.

Global Online Gambling and Betting Market 2014 depicts the latest trends

and developments in the field. The global online gambling market has a current value

estimated at a medium double digit number in billions of Euros, with

growth expected between +7 and 10% annually in the next few years.

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Regulation of online gambling and betting in Germany and Russia lag some

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The spread of online betting and gambling is forcing governments to act

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The regulatory landscape on online gambling and betting is varied. Among the findings of the reports

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. Total online gambling revenue in Italy

recently reached a high number in hundreds of millions of Euros, with

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market research reports and market data. The first

regulated online gambling website in Kenya was launched in 2013. Progress in online betting regulation in Germany is

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sports betting licenses.

In the largest Latin American market, Brazil, gambling and betting is

forbidden except for horse racing. In North America and major Asian

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players chose to bet on unregulated networks.

Trends in online gambling and betting.

- The analyses, statistical reports and forecasts are only based on

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Regional variations in legislation and acceptance of online gambling and


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In France, online gambling and betting has been legal since 2010, but

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Maria Bartiromo | Fox News

She has become part of pop culture during her career, having had cameos in several motion picture movies, playing herself in “Wall Street Two” with Michael Douglas and “Arbitrage” with Richard Gere, among others. She joined CNBC in 1993 after five years as a producer, writer and assignment editor with CNN Business News, where she wrote and produced some of CNN’s top business programs.

In 2009, the Financial Times named her one of the “50 Faces That Shaped the Decade,” and she was the first female journalist to be inducted into the Cable Hall of Fame Class of 2011. She later won a second Emmy for her 2009 documentary, “Inside the Mind of Google,” which aired globally on CNBC. She also served as an adjunct professor at NYU Stern School of Business for the fall semesters of 2010 through 2013.

Bartiromo has been a pioneer in her industry. Her first Emmy was for her 2008 News and Documentary coverage of the 2007-2008 financial collapse and her “Bailout Talks Collapse” coverage was broadcast on NBC Nightly News. During her 20-year tenure as the face of CNBC, she launched the network’s morning program, Squawk Box; anchored The Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo; and was the anchor and managing editor of the nationally syndicated On the Money with Maria Bartiromo, formerly The Wall Street Journal Report with Maria Bartiromo.

Bartiromo has written weekly columns for Business Week and Milano Finanza magazines, as well as monthly columns for Individual Investor, Ticker and Reader’s Digest magazines. Bartiromo is the author of several books, including The Weekend That Changed Wall Street, published by Portfolio / Penguin, and The 10 Laws of Enduring Success, published by Random House; both were released in 2010.

. In 1995, she became the first journalist to report live from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on a daily basis. She has been published in the Financial Times, Newsweek, Town and Country, Registered Rep and the New York Post.

Maria Bartiromo joined FOX Business Network (FBN) as Global Markets Editor in January 2014.  She is the anchor of Mornings with Maria on FBN (weekdays from 9-11 AM/ET) and Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo (Sundays at 10 AM/ET) on FOX News Channel (FNC).

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The Negative Influences of Media on Society You Never Thought About

So there is a section positively influenced by the media while there are others who take the wrong message from it. This makes the overweight feel out of place. How far do we go to check its authenticity? How deep do we dig to get to the root of something that’s making news? How critically do we judge the reality of reality shows and the truth behind true stories? We don’t think, we believe. But isn’t it too much to blindly believe that they exist? Fiction is amusing only till the distinction between fact and fiction is clear. Haven’t you had experiences of a bad dream after watching a violent movie? Or of imagining something scary happening to you after watching a horror film? Or a sudden fear gripping your mind after reading about a murder in your city? The reality should be depicted but not so gaudily that it’ll have a lasting impact on people’s minds.

You want to imitate an action sequence just because your favorite action hero looked ‘cool’ doing it. With the intent of stressing their point or for grabbing greater attention from the masses, media hypes or exaggerates things to a certain degree. Media is exposing the masses to fast food products, canned food, fad diets, and energy drinks. The masses fall for this being-in-the-news and end up imitating celebrities without much thought. The benefits of following a balanced diet are not being hyped anywhere. Not everyone is able to filter that element. Any publicity is good publicity, you begin to feel.

The negative effects of media on children are manifested in terms of their changing mental setup and the declining quality of their lifestyle. The bad is overinflated and the good goes unnoticed. Due to the oh-so-alluring media, most of their time is spent glued to the television, reading celebrity gossip, listening to something sensational or wandering aimlessly on the Internet. And that’s how impactive media is.

While a certain amount of exposure to media is essential for introducing ourselves to the world outside, excessive exposure, uncontrolled access and belief without thought won’t lead us anywhere. News sources often bombard you with the same negative stories over and over again, in order to increase the impact. People spending hours in front of a television or surfing the Internet experience eye problems. If children are bombarded with fight sequences, stunt work, sex and rape scenes, suicides and murders through books or movies, they are bound to leave a scar on these impressionable minds. Media is everywhere, affecting every aspect of life.


Unhealthy Lifestyle

Changed Outlook

The media is so overwhelming that the masses end up believing everything it says/shows. They are ready to starve themselves to lose weight. You want to wear the shade of nail polish Lady Gaga wears for that frantic gaga look. This leads to a notion that thin is sexy and fat is not. It’s not just media to be blamed in this case. Media is the interface through which millions look at the world outside. You want to be someone, but not yourself! And now you say media does not influence you! Oh come on, it surely does! Mass media does affect the way in which masses think and act. This can, and has led to increasing cases of anorexia. This is leading teenagers to adopt unhealthy eating habits. When the two worlds mix, life becomes difficult.


Your role models are people that the media exposes you to. What is shown with an intent to ‘spread a message’ ends up becoming a bombardment of the bad, the ugly. In a survey done on fifth graders by the National Institute on Media and the Family, it was found that kids had become dissatisfied with their bodies after watching a video of a certain very popular artiste and a certain scene from a popular TV show (names omitted on purpose).

The media has, in its own way, changed people’s outlook towards life. Use your judgment before following or falling for anything. Watching TV or browsing the web late night is spoiling the sleeping habits of many.. When this thought grips the minds of youngsters, they take to fad diets or turn to cosmetic surgeries to get that so-called perfect body. You want to do everything that people from the glamor world do, you want to be like your favorite celebrity. Those at a vulnerable age, especially children and teenagers, are highly influenced by anything that is put before them in a jazzy way. This affects kids and teenagers the most, as they are exposed to things they might interpret wrongly or may not even understand at that age.

Vampires, werewolves, witches, ghosts – where did they come from? Fairies, superheroes, angels – where did they come from? It’s not only media to be blamed, as these characters belong to folklore. We don’t judge, we get influenced. Sometimes, small incidents or events in the lives of celebrities and politicians are hyped, in order to make them more sensational. Media has negative effects on the physical and psychological well-being of society. It influences their behavior both positively and negatively. But the negative effects are not conducive to a healthy society. The positive effects are surely celebrated by one and all. It’s not possible to insulate yourself completely from the effects of media, even if you limit the exposure. Children should invest more time reading good books, studying, playing outdoors and exercising. Media sources are so many in number and all of them so convincingly make their point, that it is hard to distinguish between right and wrong. An inferiority complex and lowered confidence in people with not-so-perfect bodies can lead to eating disorders. Depiction of the bad has a negative impact on kids not mature enough to interpret what they are being shown. Aren’t there ghost and vampire stories that media claims as real? These characters enter our world through books and movies. You want to wear the LBD just because you are a fan of Coco Chanel. It is bombarding you with content, news, information, gossip, rumors – it is exposing you to everything it has, some things necessary, some not; some things important, some not, some things you want to ignore, some things you cannot. And not just children, the unpleasant can impact even an adult’s mind. Media highlights controversies and scandals in the lives of celebrities. It has led to a general opinion that size-zero is the in thing and fat and chubby are out. And there are so many things you see around you, without choosing to watch them. An early exposure to bold or violent films, books publishing adult content and news portraying ugly social practices has a deep impact on young minds. You ask me why? Well, because there are these junk food advertisements everywhere. The impact of media is such that the wrong, the controversial, and the bad is more talked about. The media is constantly bombarding us with information. Refrain from watching such programs or news. They will only make the negative influence of media more obvious.

The Solution

The solution to avoiding the negative influence of media lies in limiting media exposure and choosing what to watch. There is no denying their amusement value or entertainment quotient. Parents and teachers have a big role to play in selecting what the young should see and what they should not.

Wrong Message

Information Overload

Right-or-Wrong Dilemma

Women with petite bodies and girls with a barbie figure are always shown to be more popular or attractive while the overweight are portrayed as less popular, having less friends and being bullied. But there are advertisements of expensive exercise equipment, and weight and fat loss programs. To get rid of a big nose or to get those big pouty lips, teenagers are ready to go under the knife.

Media is held responsible for the change in eating habits of teenagers and the unhealthy lifestyle they are adopting. At that age, they are attracted to anything that’s flashy and anything that can make news.

The negatives in society are highlighted with the purpose of awakening people about them. Adults may have the maturity to distinguish between the good and the bad, but bombarding only the bad can affect anyone at least at the subconscious level. The ‘awakening’ does not reach everyone or it reaches the masses in the wrong way. The reel entertains only till its difference from the real is understood. But media did play a role in propagating these characters and making them seem real. But unfortunately sometimes, the message is misconstrued. Newspapers, television and the Internet are used to convey social messages. Media influences them negatively. Most believe everything to be real, especially kids and teenagers.

Health Problems

To some extent, media is responsible for generating negative feelings among those exposed to it. The craze for models or actors and actresses, makes teenagers want bodies and facial features like theirs. Media claims to depict the ‘today’, but not all types of media show only the truth. Media influences public opinion and impacts the choices that people make.

Media portrayals give rise to stereotypes, affecting your mindset. Thus, all the time, you are glued to some form of media. Just like them, even you want to be in the news. With a ‘world’ of information and entertainment waiting on the other side of a computer or TV screen, it’s not unnatural for anyone to spend hours exploring it; it’s addictive. Don’t believe in them without thinking. As a responsible adult (parent or teacher), exercise control on the media exposure that kids and teenagers get. Don’t take media portrayals by their word. Instead, watch good programs that carry healthy content, engage in positive activities, and encourage others to do the same. There’s no one advertising the benefits of eating fresh fruit everyday, no one’s promoting drinking 8 glasses of water daily. Here, we will try to understand how media influences us negatively.

The media in itself is so addictive that once glued to it, you tend to forget everything else. When you are not watching TV, you are surfing the Internet, when you are not on the web, you are reading newspapers, when you are not reading anything, you are listening to something. Put things in perspective, and don’t let the media influence you to do the wrong things.

Blind Imitation

Media Addiction

Fact-Fantasy Confusion

When you try to imitate your role models from the glamor industry, do you give a thought to whether you are doing right or wrong? It is often seen that young girls and boys imitate celebrities blindly. You want to sport your favorite actors’ hairstyles and you want to walk like those ramp models do. Lack of physical activity leads to obesity problems. No one’s propagating the importance of exercising to keep fit. Advertisements carry subliminal messages influencing buyers’ psychology, or carry direct messages that bear a negative influence. The only way to shield yourself from them, is to not allow them to influence you. For example, the negative effects of addiction are portrayed through advertisements. The media does play a role in portraying thin as beautiful and fat as ugly. Sometimes, little things are blown out of proportion thus changing the way they are perceived by the audience

Betting on basketball akin to investing.

If Pepperdine covered, we’d both win $120.

Moulin Rouge was listed at 3-1 to win Best Picture: the second favorite behind A Beautiful Mind. (The spread is the number of points that the favored team is expected to win by while parlays are wagers that allow you to bet on several games in order to increase your payout.) And just as a market neophyte would be confused by a streaming quote feed, the rows of neon numbers on a sports book’s massive board is certainly overwhelming for the uninitiated.

Betting on sports is legal in Nevada and most of the casinos in Vegas have a section called the sports book where people place their bets and watch the games. It was totally irrational. I occasionally get angry emails from readers who disapprove of negative comments I make about stocks they own. What if I bet on Penn with the spread and they don’t win but lose by only three? Would it make me happy to profit from a Penn defeat? This is too disturbing a thought to consider any further.

My friend, being a prudent lawyer, decided to bet $22 dollars on Pepperdine’s opponent, Wake Forest. A friend of mine and I placed the same $20 bet on a 3-team parlay: Kent State, Missouri and Pepperdine. (Go Quakers!) Part of me wants to bet big on Penn (they were four and a half point underdogs as I wrote this) so I can reap the financial rewards when they win. Betting the money line means you think a team will win the game outright, regardless of the spread.

Odds for the Oscars

LAS VEGAS (CNN/Money) – This will be blasphemy to hardcore followers of Wall Street, those who think of the market as a rational way to try and accumulate wealth. Pepperdine, a 4-point underdog, played after these two games were finished. But I, hate to admit, am a bit of a hypocrite in this regard.

It would have been nice to be able to make real bets on the Oscars though. You can’t actually make bets – – they’re only for “entertainment purposes” – – but many of us were left scratching our heads about the favorites for the major awards.

When it comes to sports, the numbers for the most part don’t lie. OK, there certainly has been some point shaving in the past – – the City College of New York scandal of the 1950s comes to mind – – but that doesn’t even come close to the scam that was Enron.

I, however, was not so wise. If Wake Forest won by more than 4 points he would lose his parlay bet but win $20 on the Wake bet. Example. Kent State and Missouri both covered. I maintain that getting too emotional about a stock is not a good thing. Some of the odds did seem pretty good. Fortunately, a $100 windfall at a blackjack table that day kept me even for the day. Kansas (boy did Holy Cross give the Jayhawks a scare!) isn’t going to announce that the NCAA is investigating it for improperly recognizing hundreds of points scored in Big 12 games from 1999.

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All in all, I made six bets on Thursday and won none, for a total loss of $100. Pepperdine was competitive for the entire game but missed some crucial shots in the last few minutes (the bitter loser in me would say that they choked) and lost by eight.

Savvy strategies

Hoops junkies pore through the stats published in the USA Today college basketball special pullout section (an essential purchase for any NCAA fan) with the same amount of rigor that accountants use to audit financial statements.

There’s also the emotion factor. Penn didn’t cover, losing by 7 after this story was published. I was convinced that Pepperdine would cover. But after spending most of Thursday watching college basketball at the Paris Casino’s sports book in Las Vegas, I can safely say that betting on the NCAA Tournament has a lot in common with investing in stocks.

Betting on basketball isn’t even as risky as you might think. Huh? Ewan McGregor singing Elton John (quite badly I might add) is more worthy of the cinema’s highest honor than The Lord of the Rings, Gosford Park or In the Bedroom? Whatever.

That’s what sleep deprivation does to you folks.

I reacted quite angrily any time one of the CBS announcers said a bad thing about a team I bet on. Hey, I actually thought the Waves would win the game outright (similar to how many investors were convinced back in early 2000 that tech stocks could only go higher and higher) and even have a chance of upsetting Oregon in the second round. A sports book during the height of March Madness is a wild, profane, testosterone-charged pit fueled by greed and fear. When the color commentator pointed out that Tulsa is a small team, I probably did not need to act as if he was insulting my mother.

. Instead of P/E ratios and mutual funds, you have “point spreads” and “parlays”. Kind of like the way VCs invest in many risky companies with the hopes of having one big initial public offering make up for all the flops, I made several “money line” bets on huge underdogs. It’s kind of like making a covered call on an option, selling the right to buy shares at a certain price while also having a long position on the stock.

Speaking of auditing, the fact that stats in college basketball cannot be manipulated is actually a reason why betting on a college basketball game might be a wiser move than buying a stock. Just goes to show that you can’t discount the importance of luck any time you put your money to work.

Why betting is better than investing

With that in mind, I have no idea what to do when my beloved alma mater Penn plays California on Friday. Sounds exactly like the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

(Disgruntled writer’s note: As it turned out, my fears were for naught.

Like investing, gambling has a lingo that you need to learn in order to be successful. “Best bet on the board?” observed my friend Jamey Tesler, “Ian McKellen for Best Supporting Actor at 6-1. You don’t have to worry about whether or not Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski set up special purpose entities in order to keep some of star player Jason Williams’ turnovers off the stat sheet. But another part of me is slightly worried. Grrr)

In addition to the NCAA action, you can also get odds for the Oscars. So it would essentially be a wash. There are even ways to hedge and minimize your losses if you really know what you’re doing. Gandalf, baby!”

Most of my friends and fellow gamblers that I talked to would stick to betting on games with the spread but I foolishly followed the venture capital style of investing in college basketball. All three teams had to cover in order to win the bet, which paid off at odds of 6 to 1. So I did not hedge