Blackjack Probabilities Of Dealer Busting

Published: December 11, 2018

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In online blackjack you have the liberty to stand or hit on any hand value, provided that you have not busted. Theoretically, you can stand on a hand value of 12 and hit on a hand value of 18, though both would be foolish steps to take. The material aspect is that you have a choice. On the other hand, the dealer has no choice in online blackjack. The dealer hand is played as per set rules by the software. So it is much simpler and more meaningful to determine the probability of the dealer busting given the face up card.

The probability of the dealer busting given the face up card is determined through computer simulation. The probabilities are different for different face up cards in the dealer hand. The probabilities are marginally dependent on two other factors. One of them is the number of decks in the shoe and the other is whether the dealer stands or hits on a soft 17. Taking the example of eight decks and the dealer standing on soft 17, the probability of the dealer busting are given below

Face up card Ace: 17%

Face up card 2: 35%

Face up card 3: 37%

Face up card 4: 40%

Face up card 5: 42%

Face up card 6: 42%

Face up card 7: 26%

Face up card 8: 24%

Face up card 9: 23%

Face up card 10 value: 23%

An understanding of these probabilities will help you to improve your decision making in online blackjack. However, you must always keep one thing in mind. These probabilities are only one of many factors involved in selecting the correct blackjack move in a given situation. All factors need to be evaluated. Two examples of how these probabilities will help are given below.

The obvious conclusion is that the dealer is in an advantageous position when the probability of busting is in the lower range. The face up cards being ace, 7, 8, 9 and ten value make the dealer relatively strong and the player relatively weak. You will never double on a dealer ace and you will double on the other dealer strong cards only if you have equal strength in your dealt cards.

The second example is when you have a hand value of hard 16, say a 9 and 7. You will stand on the dealer weak cards and hit on the dealer strong cards. The reasoning is that you should not risk busting when the dealer has a high chance of busting.


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