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Lottery newsletters try to predict winning numbers

Insider BuzzInsider Buzz: Lottery newsletters try to predict winning numbers

Let's start with the good news: You are about to win $500. No, it's not 100 percent certain, but frankly, it looks pretty darn good. All you need to do is drive to New York, buy a lottery ticket and play the number 686. Hello 500 smackeroos! It's basically a lock and you want to know why? Well, Roy Siano is glad you asked.

"Double sixes are our best bet for the next issue," he says.

That would be the next issue of 3 + 4 Digit Lotto Stats, one of two biweekly publications owned, edited and published by Siano and his business partner for the past five years, Stephen Allensworth. Each issue of Lotto Stats and its sister magazine, Lotto News, purport to do what any mathematician will tell you cannot be done: teach you how to win the lottery.

For $2.95 per issue, you get 32 black-and-white pages stuffed with reams of data, dozens of charts and erudite-sounding advice from a handful of columnists, each offering strategies to gamble your way to Fat City courtesy of the New York lottery. Plenty of these columns come off as — what's the polite phrase here? — utterly  amamie. Readers in a recent issue who saw a door in their REM sleep, for instance, were advised to play 271. Why? Unclear.

But that's the more fanciful stuff. Siano and Allensworth claim that solid logic undergirds the "hit frequency charts" and "pattern tables" crammed into their magazines. It boils down to this: If you flip a coin nine times and it keeps coming up heads, what should you bet will happen in the next flip?

"Tails, of course," says Siano, sitting in Allensworth's apartment in Port Chester, a suburb of New York near the Connecticut border.

"We use gambler's math," says Allensworth. "What it does is track events. Sometimes numbers are out for a long time," which is to say, they fail to show up in winning combinations. "Generally speaking, after they've been out for a while, they tend to make up lost ground."

Of course, the world is filled with geeks who find this "logic" laughable. Oh, they'll tell you that no matter how many tails in a row you get from a coin, the odds are still 50-50 with each new flip. The misimpression that a head is more likely after a string of tails, these so-called experts will tell you, even has a name. It's called the gambler's fallacy.

"It's also called the 'lottery fallacy,' " says Derrick Niederman, co-author of "What the Numbers Say: A Field Guide to Mastering Our Numerical World." "The law of averages isn't compelled to make adjustments on a near-term basis. What look like patterns are actually just the effect of randomness."

Stephen Allensworth, left, and Roy Siano publish Lotto News and Lotto Stats.The lure of the gambler's fallacy, Niederman notes, has led more than a few people to ruin. In 2004, in lottery-crazed Italy, the number 53 failed to pop in a two-digit game for 152 consecutive draws. The whole country was slowly gripped by 53 fever. When the number was finally drawn in February 2005, one newspaper ran a headline that said "No. 53 Puts Italy Out of its Lottery Agony." Phooey, retorts Siano. "Could we have survived for all these years if the information we're providing these players isn't helping?"

He has a point, though exactly how many players and how much help is anyone's guess. Neither he nor Allensworth will discuss circulation numbers, aside from saying it's in the thousands, and that both publications are available at more than 7,000 places across the state.

Siano and Allensworth also sell results and reports about the lotteries in New Jersey and Florida online, and in the coming year they hope to market Web-based expertise about every lottery in the country. There's nothing quite like Lotto Hotline Inc., as the partners call their company. It is a mini-empire built entirely on an idea that is demonstrably false.

"I sell about five copies every week," says Izzy Espinoza, owner of Tiendita on Worth, a bodega in Manhattan's Tribeca. "The people who read it love it and they come and get it every week. They all have their favorite columnists."

Do these readers win a lot?

Espinoza ponders that one a moment. "Not really."

By their own accounting, Siano and Allensworth coughed up $54,000 worth of winning numbers last year in News and Stats. Then again, they grudgingly admit, buying tickets for all those combinations would have cost you close to $51,000. Still, if those figures are accurate, these guys beat the odds in 2005. Which raises an obvious question: If they have deciphered the lottery, why coach instead of play?

"As soon as I play for myself, it doesn't work," says Allensworth, 61. It's Allensworth's personal curse — he can pick numbers like a champ, he says, but as soon as he plunks down money, forget it. His biggest winner ever is $500. He rarely buys a ticket anymore.

Siano, who is 53 and the bubblier of the two, hasn't fared much better.

"I've got to be honest with you," he says. "I think I'm behind a little bit, overall."

Washington Post

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17 comments. Last comment 9 years ago by cps10.
Page 1 of 2
Avatar
detroit/michigan/usa
United States
Member #12322
March 11, 2005
36 Posts
Offline
Posted: January 24, 2006, 9:45 am - IP Logged

A Tea Leaf and a Crystal Ball, hummmmm.  wonder if their sales potential generates a cash flow potential?  Those that understand Lottery winnings are generated by timing............ having the right numbers at the right time, and playing those numbers on thqt day. Having generous helping of LUCK, and a Generous Helping of Luck!!!, and a generous helping of luck.  Star alignment in your favor wouldn't hurt either, you might win $3.00.  which is why I only play multi state games, and only when jackpot is really something you can work with (aftertax cash!) know what I mean, not those misleading advertised jackpots.  Bet I could teach  ole JACK how to fly way under the readr screen

    fja's avatar - gnome1

    United States
    Member #91
    January 19, 2002
    9927 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: January 24, 2006, 11:56 am - IP Logged

     have to give them credit for their honesty,  They are putting out a paper that is based on historical data, and they even admit that its still a "being in the right place at the right time " type of luck that will win out...I imagine that its a good read but not much more than that.  Still winning most of your money back is better than what I do. 


      United States
      Member #379
      June 5, 2002
      11296 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: January 24, 2006, 4:58 pm - IP Logged

      I delivered Siano's Lottery New$ from April 1993 to December 2001, when it went out of business. I also delivered Lotto Stats from November 1999 to 2001. Lotto News is the reincarnation of Lottery New$.

        JAP69's avatar - Lottery-053.jpg
        South Carolina
        United States
        Member #6
        November 4, 2001
        8497 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: January 24, 2006, 5:54 pm - IP Logged


        I got and read N.Y.lottery News weekly for a long time while in N.Y.
        That is the Mag from which I learned to do my e-z pick from. Just studied the data in the mag and bam it came to me.



        Stats hunting: Type

          justxploring's avatar - villiarna
          Wandering Aimlessly
          United States
          Member #25360
          November 5, 2005
          4457 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: January 24, 2006, 7:15 pm - IP Logged

          "what's the polite phrase here? — utterly amamie."

          I thought I had a pretty decent vocabulary, but I never heard of the word amamie. Then I looked it up and the only word I could find close to it is "cXXk amamie" as in ridiculously implausible. So either it's a French word or the writer is apprehensive about using the word in a sentence.  Hmm.  Then I read where some sites won't allow the word cxxx so maybe it's c***amamie.  Sorry folks, I have one of those "Enquiring Minds" that needs to know these things.

          Conehead

          In an case, there's nothing wrong with using everything available source to help you achieve your goal, even if it's all bull-amamie!  Wink  As fja wrote, at least they're being honest about their success.

           

          I just edited this previous post so it makes sense, since so many words were missing. 

           

           

           

           

           

            Avatar
            Coastal Georgia
            United States
            Member #2653
            October 30, 2003
            1866 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: January 24, 2006, 7:20 pm - IP Logged

            "what's the polite phrase here? — utterly amamie."

            I thought I had a pretty decent vocabulary, but I never heard of the word amamie. Then I looked it up and the only word I could find close to it is " amamie" as in ridiculously implausible. So either it's a French word or the writer is apprehensive about using the word in a sentence.  Hmm.  Then I read where some sites won't allow the word so maybe it's ****amamie.  Sorry folks, I have one of those "Enquiring Minds" that needs to know these things.

            Conehead

            In an case, there's nothing wrong with using everything available source to help you achieve your goal, even if it's all bull-amamie!  Wink  As fja wrote, at least they're being honest about their success.

             

            another and bull story.

             

                                           

                          

             

             

              justxploring's avatar - villiarna
              Wandering Aimlessly
              United States
              Member #25360
              November 5, 2005
              4457 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: January 24, 2006, 7:23 pm - IP Logged

              "another and bull story."

               

              LOL, we were both writing the same thing at the same time DoubleDown!!  Maybe you already knew the rooster word wouldn't appear, but this is news to me.

                Avatar
                Coastal Georgia
                United States
                Member #2653
                October 30, 2003
                1866 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: January 24, 2006, 7:54 pm - IP Logged

                Just:

                 

                Yes, there is a program in place to catch certain words and delete them.

                It's actually pretty cool b/c it keeps the board clean, but at the same time,

                If I were a ( gasp )South Carolina Game**** fan, I would not get to say

                 Go ****s !!!

                DD

                 

                                               

                              

                 

                 

                  Tenaj's avatar - michellea
                  Charlotte NC
                  United States
                  Member #17406
                  June 18, 2005
                  4034 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: January 24, 2006, 9:25 pm - IP Logged

                  Green laughWhat look like patterns are actually just the effect of randomness."

                  Then randomness have a pattern.

                  takeemtothebank

                    Avatar

                    United States
                    Member #10720
                    January 23, 2005
                    932 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: January 24, 2006, 9:32 pm - IP Logged

                    It bugs ME when anyone says a Lottery is not "systemable". Any game is, just that some are a lot more difficult than others and you have to stick to what helps and ALWAYS use some kind of system on Pick3/Pick4 games because they are geared so that played randomly you will always get back 50% or less what you put in.

                    I have won twice in the last 2 weeks alone using my own system that I DON'T sell because I want to be playing in the minority so the win is higher (NJ Pick-3/Pick-4 payout varies based on # of winners). I would have won several more times but often just one number misses or I cut back and the one I dropped came out. For example, 1-2-7 box hit 3 times but after I played. Also a # in PA hit but I had it played only 2 days and it needed 10 days. And I would avoid a # like that "53" because my system knows when to say when.

                    So don't be going off half without a system!

                      mylollipop's avatar - Trek STLOGO6.png

                      United States
                      Member #24380
                      October 21, 2005
                      623 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: January 24, 2006, 9:32 pm - IP Logged

                      Might be random.  Whatever it is, it is a lottery fan's friend or close friend.  Whatever, it may be.  DO you think that the lottery I dream of could be taught?

                      Good Idea to introduce the USA Lottery!  We need a national lottery to take care of charitable efforts of the USA and other areas of the world when NATURAL DISASTERS Strike.  And believe me, they are going to come in a D-e-l-u-g-e! in the next ten years.  (Read the national weather service web sites).  Can we depend on the generosity of citizens like 911 and the great out-pouring of generosity for Hurricane Katrina? There were other disaters in the world as well, such as the Sunami, several earthquakes...the list goes on.

                      So, to introduce this phenomenal lottery, lets start by offering prizes to promote the lottery.  In each state there will be top prizes in addition to the cash valued Jackpots. Come on ya'll, Let's hear it for the

                      PatriotUSA Lottery!Patriot 

                        KyMystikal's avatar - Lottery-016.jpg
                        Clarksville,Tennessee
                        United States
                        Member #8658
                        November 13, 2004
                        1929 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: January 25, 2006, 5:27 am - IP Logged

                        Might be random.  Whatever it is, it is a lottery fan's friend or close friend.  Whatever, it may be.  DO you think that the lottery I dream of could be taught?

                        Good Idea to introduce the USA Lottery!  We need a national lottery to take care of charitable efforts of the USA and other areas of the world when NATURAL DISASTERS Strike.  And believe me, they are going to come in a D-e-l-u-g-e! in the next ten years.  (Read the national weather service web sites).  Can we depend on the generosity of citizens like 911 and the great out-pouring of generosity for Hurricane Katrina? There were other disaters in the world as well, such as the Sunami, several earthquakes...the list goes on.

                        So, to introduce this phenomenal lottery, lets start by offering prizes to promote the lottery.  In each state there will be top prizes in addition to the cash valued Jackpots. Come on ya'll, Let's hear it for the

                        PatriotUSA Lottery!Patriot 

                        I like this idea but won't every organization want a lottery to help them???

                        I love doubles and remember, it's just a game!!!!!!

                          Zeno's avatar - ummm
                          Somewhere in Washington
                          United States
                          Member #3103
                          December 24, 2003
                          51 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: January 25, 2006, 7:57 am - IP Logged

                          "Could we have survived for all these years if the information we're providing these players isn't helping?"

                          Why certainly! People are basically idiots! Casinos rake in billions. People believe the crap these guys are publishing and 20% believe the lottery is the path to wealth!

                            BaristaExpress's avatar - BaristaExpressMX zpsfb0d8b5d.png
                            Magnolia, Delaware
                            United States
                            Member #18795
                            July 20, 2005
                            789 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: January 25, 2006, 9:05 am - IP Logged

                            We (The United States) Don't Need A National Lottery To Fund Any Natural Disasters! And To Answer Your Question, Can We Depend On The Generosity of The United States Citizens? "YES WE CAN". We As A Nation Are The Most Generous Of Any Nation In The World, When It Comes To Stepping Up To The Plate And Providing Funds and Equipment For Any Natural Disaster In The World!

                            So Get Off This Kick Of Yours For A National Lottery, Because It Will Never Happen! And I Very Much Dislike The Idea Of Our Government Being In Charge Of It! Besides "Our Government" Can't Handle The Money Of This Nation Correctly Now! So, What In Gods Name Is It, That Makes You Think They Could With Even More Money Via The National Lottery For The Natural Disasters To Come In This Nations Future? (This ought to be fun to see the response, if they can come up with one that makes Any Sense)

                            Now The Thought Of Our Natural Lottery (if it was to come about, which it won't) To Fund Some Other Countries Disasters, I Don't Like (NOT ONE BIT)! In That Area It Will Stay Just As It Is Now(Status Quo), Charitable Donations From This Country And Other Nations To Help Them Recover!

                            Keep dreaming the impossible dream, it just may come true! Thumbs Up