Only five cards (ace - 5) can improve a 16. That leaves 8 out of 13 cards (61.5%) which will bust my hand!

If I hit on a 16 I have less than a 38.5% chance of improving my hand...

I realize that the strategy ONLY calls for a player to draw if the dealer is showing a 7 - ace but that’s 61.5% of the time that I’ll be hitting on 16. Wouldnt I be better off taking my chances of not busting, since the chances of busting are much higher when hitting with a 16?

Thank you!

Quote:Richyrich561Just like, mathematically, buying insurance on a dealer ace doesn’t make sense because it pays 2-1 when the odds of the dealer drawing a 10 are only 3-1, can anyone explain how hitting on 16, as recommended in “basic blackjack strategy” makes sense when the chances of busting when hitting on 16 are 61.5%?

Only five cards (ace - 5) can improve a 16. That leaves 8 out of 13 cards (61.5%) which will bust my hand!

If I hit on a 16 I have less than a 38.5% chance of improving my hand...

I realize that the strategy ONLY calls for a player to draw if the dealer is showing a 7 - ace but that’s 61.5% of the time that I’ll be hitting on 16. Wouldnt I be better off taking my chances of not busting, since the chances of busting are much higher when hitting with a 16?

Thank you!

A player standing on 16 or less can only win if the dealer busts. While it's true that hitting on 16 gives only about 38% chance to improve, I estimate the chance that the dealer busts when showing a 7 is somewhere in the range of 25-28%. (I bet there are tables on this somewhere, and the exact probabilities will vary based on game rules, number of decks, etc.) The dealer's chance of busting only decreases with an upcard of 8, 9, T, or A.

So a first pass at your question is that standing on 16 against a 7 gives you a (say) 28% chance to win, while hitting gives you a 38% chance to improve. This alone isn't enough to answer the question, since you might improve but still lose, but at least it points out why hitting on 16 might be the correct play.

The odds for a dealer drawing a 10 are 2.25:1 against. Hitting (16 v T) shows virtually the same expectation as standing and both underperform against surrender. The chance of the dealer making his hand is > 75%.

Quote:unJonFacing a T is so close you should stand if you have a 4 or 5 in your hand.

Especially in single deck, stand if there are more 6s remaining than 5s. The 6 is more significant than a 4 or a 5. What Sklansky would call a "key card".

Quote:bobbartopEspecially in single deck, stand if there are more 6s remaining than 5s. The 6 is more significant than a 4 or a 5. What Sklansky would call a "key card".

I believe you are better off standing on any three card hard 16.

When you're in a situation of having to hit 16, you will lose most of the time. If you choose to stand on that 16, you will lose even more.