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PokerStars Lowers $1/$2 - $2/$4 Limit Hold'em Rake

By , Rakeback.com Staff Writer

Effective June 1st, $1/$2 and $2/$4 Limit Hold'em fans on PokerStars can look forward to paying less rake in pots where three or more players are dealt in.

The maximum rake that can be taken out of any 6-Max or Full Ring pot is to be lowered, which effectively makes it much cheaper to play in big, capped pots.  

New Limit Hold'em Rake Table

  New Rake (June 1st 2012 Onwards) Old Rake (Jan - May 2012)
Stake Players Rake Cap Players Rake Cap
1/2 LHE 3-4 3% $0.70 3-4 3% $0.80

5-10 4% $0.80 5-10 4% $1.00
 2/4 LHE 3-4 3% $0.70 3-4 3% $0.80
  5-10 3% $1.25 5-10 3% $2.00

Hand Example

A of clubsA of spades runs into K of heartsK of diamonds at a three-handed $2/$4 table. A monster 20 Big Bet (BB) pot results. That's worth $80 to the winner before rake.

3% of this pot equals $2.40. Under the old system, the rake would be capped at $2.00, meaning 2.5% of the pot was lost to PokerStars. With the new rake structure, only $1.25 is taken, which is less than 1.6%. The winner keeps 75 cents more than before, almost an extra 0.2 BB/100. That's huge in Limit games, where a winrate of just 1 BB/100 is considered solid.

The advantage of playing in large pots with a cap, is that every dollar put into the pot above a certain point is unraked. Once the cap is hit, you're playing rake-free. From June 1st that point will come a lot sooner.


These changes are a result of player feedback following PokerStars' rake changes at the start of the year. While many players saw better rewards, low stakes Limit Hold'em suffered. 

2011 figures for $1/$2 and $2/$4 rake were approximately 2.8BB/100 and 2.2BB/100 respectively. TwoPlusTwo Forum poster JH1 collated a rake analysis spreadsheet using a sample of datamined hands, which showed that rake in 2012 had increased by about 0.1BB/100 for those stakes.

From June 1st onwards we'd now expect the rake to drop below even 2011 levels. This will result in a higher percentage of winners at these stakes, and more money flowing upwards in the poker economy. Microstakes players can also aim to take shots and move up quicker, now that $1/$2 is easier to beat.

Great news for all Limit Hold'em players, on a site that already offers the lowest rake and highest traffic online.

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