What is Arbitrage? Options, Tactics, Definitions

April 10, 2023

What is Arbitrage?

Arbitrage is the act of finding equivalent assets- whether it’s an investment, product, or property- buying it for a low price and then selling it in a different financial market for a higher price.

Arbitrage trading is an arbitrage process that deals specifically in trading financial instruments. 

Financial arbitrage is the most common form of arbitrage. But, since you mostly deal with the difference in exchange rate, the amount you earn is tiny.

Arbitrage in simple words is buying an asset at a cheap price and selling it at a higher price. The price difference is your profit.

An example of arbitrage is buying a stock at a lower price in one stock market and reselling it at a higher price in a different stock market. For instance, the arbitrage trader may purchase one stock on the Swiss Market Index and resell it for a higher price on the New York Stock Exchange. Another arbitrage example is buying a product on clearance at a brick-and-mortar store and selling it online for a higher price.

What is an arbitrage opportunity? Arbitrage opportunities are any chance you have to buy something at a low price and resell it at a high price. In the stock market, arbitrage opportunities include trading between foreign markets or different companies. But, no matter where you practice arbitrage, you have to do it quickly. Arbitrage opportunities disappear quickly because the competition to make profitable transactions is high. In fact, many arbitrageurs use software just to stay on top of it.

What is an arbitrage fund? An arbitrage fund is a mutual fund that’s low risk and involves comparing securities from different markets, leveraging possible market inefficiency to collect higher returns.

What are the Various Types of Arbitrage?

Pure arbitrage is an arbitrage strategy with the least risk. It involves no additional money and your profit is guaranteed.

Simple arbitrage is the act of buying an asset and selling the same asset between 2 markets. This is the overarching, simplest form of arbitrage trade out there.

Triangular arbitrage is an arbitrage strategy that involves 3 arbitrage opportunities. With triangular arbitrage, the trader ends up selling an asset twice for a maximum return.

Statistical arbitrage is another short-term arbitrage strategy that requires more computations to find the best deals between very diverse portfolios. This strategy is extremely complex and mathematically based. To use statistical arbitrage in pairs trading, you’ll need to choose the best stocks to pair. Then, you’ll compare their prices, calculate its spread, and generate their trading signals. 

Merger arbitrage is a strategy where the arbitrage occurs when you merge two companies together. The profit here lies in the uncertainty when two companies combine. Merger arbitrage is the same as risk arbitrage. It’s so risky because the price discrepancy is not always clear.

Convertible arbitrage is the act of finding the difference between convertible bonds and stocks. It’s typically used in hedge funds.

Spatial arbitrage is the arbitrage strategy of using geographical factors to find a profit. For example, you might purchase an asset, like lumber, from an area where they are in abundance, like a forested area. Then, you may sell the lumber in a coastal region where hardwoods are scarce and the demand is higher, making the price also higher.

Cash and carry arbitrage works by comparing the long position to the short position of a single asset. Reverse cash and carry arbitrage is the act of comparing the short position and long position in a single asset.

Arbitrage trading in crypto is the act of buying crypto assets at a low price and selling them high. The only difference is that with crypto arbitrage trading, you work specifically in digital assets. Crypto arbitrage is a lower risk form of arbitrage, but it helps to have an arbitrage bot that will help arbitrage traders catch all the deals before they’re gone.

Arbitrage also exists in retail trading as another strategy for traders who buy and sell assets through a broker for personal wealth rather than a financial institution.

Arbitrage betting involves placing the basics of arbitrage on betting- typically in sports. To perform arbitrage betting, you will place multiple bets that guarantee a profit, whether the teams win or lose.

Forex arbitrage is buying and selling national currencies and leveraging different exchanges. Forex stands for “foreign exchange”, and forex trading is when you move foreign exchange assets around, buying and selling them for profits. This strategy has to do with arbitrage because arbitrage is just one forex trading strategy.

Fore more information on Forex and another business model, read our comparison between forex trading and affiliate marketing.

What is Arbitrage in Amazon?

Arbitrage in Amazon is one of many Amazon FBA business models where you find deals on goods at a low price and resell them on Amazon for a higher, different price.

Amazon arbitrage works by either choosing the retail arbitrage or the online arbitrage route. Retail arbitrage involves physically driving to brick-and-mortar stores, purchasing items on clearance, listing the products on Amazon, shipping them to an Amazon warehouse, and keeping the profits. Online arbitrage involves searching for clearance deals from top online arbitrage sites and shipping them from the retailer to an Amazon warehouse, selling them on Amazon and keeping the difference.

What is Arbitrage in Real Estate?

Arbitrage in real estate is when you purchase one property below its market value, then rent or sell the property at a higher amount. There is no flipping involved. Arbitrage in real estate investing is considered lower or no risk investing, though if you cannot find another buyer, there is certainly some risk.

What is Airbnb Arbitrage?

Airbnb arbitrage is a unique type of arbitrage where you rent apartments and then sublet them as Airbnbs. This involves sub-lease agreements and working with the property owner’s policies. Not every apartment complex will allow subletters for vacation homes.


Yes, arbitrage is legal. It’s a fast-paced and extremely profitable investment strategy and business model that has a higher barrier to entry. So, if you learn how to do it, you can collect good returns.

How Do I Start Arbitrage?

  • Decide what kind of arbitrage you want to start. The process will be different if you choose Amazon retail arbitrage, Airbnb arbitrage, forex trading, etc.
  • Begin learning all you can about your investment strategy or business model of choice.
  • If you decide to get into the investment side, start monitoring multiple markets and watching for arbitrage opportunities
  • Look into software and apps that may help you stay ahead of viable opportunities
  • Make your first investment. The minimum deposit for arbitrage can range from $50 to $3K-$5K, depending on what you’re trading and in what market. If you decide to start Amazon arbitrage, you’ll need around $100-$500 just to get a few listings up.

Can You Make a Living Off Arbitrage?

Yes, you can make a living off arbitrage, but it will take some time to build your profits. For example, with retail arbitrage, it can take 4-6 weeks before you receive any profit at all, and 203 years before you will realistically make a living. 

Conversely, it’s also possible to lose money in arbitrage trading, retail arbitrage, and real estate arbitrage. In fact, some arbitrage investments are so risky that they leave investors with less money than before the purchase.

How Risky is Arbitrage?

Arbitrage is very risky. But the risk makes arbitrage a potentially profitable opportunity. The risks of arbitrage trading include the deal failing, over-priced premiums, and unclear timelines. With retail arbitrage, the products that you purchased may not sell. With Airbnb arbitrage, you may not be able to sublet the apartments you rent, leaving you to cover the monthly rent yourself.

Arbitrage and Local Lead Generation

If arbitrage seems too risky for you, try local lead generation instead. Local lead generation is a little more guaranteed. Instead of trading and constantly watching for deals, you will create a digital asset that you own that will generate leads for small businesses. And with 42,000 zip codes, there are hundreds of thousands of service site opportunities that aren’t going anywhere fast without you.

Follow Me
Ippei Kanehara

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses

Ippei.com is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

His #1 online business recommendation in 2024, is to build your own lead generation business.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

  1. I have been accepted to the BnB formula scholarship but I am nervous about it being a bit of a scam. I would like to know more about your process if I can. Let me know and keep in touch!



{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}