Baccaratt or Baccarat (/ˈbækəræt, bɑːkəˈrɑː/; French: [bakaʁa]) is a card gameplayed at casinos. There are three popular variants of the game: punto banco(or "North American Baccaratt"), Baccaratt chemin de fer (or "chemmy"), andBaccaratt banque (or à deux tableaux). In Punto banco, each player's moves are forced by the cards the player is dealt. In Baccaratt chemin de fer and Baccaratt banque, by contrast, both players can make choices. The winning odds are in favour of the bank, with a house edge no lower than around 1 percent.
The overwhelming majority of casino Baccaratt games in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Sweden, Finland, and Macau are "Punto banco" Baccaratt and they may be seen labelled simply as "Baccaratt". About 91% of total income from Macau casinos in 2014 came from punto banco. In Punto banco, the casino banks the game at all times, and commits to playing out both hands according to fixed drawing rules, known as the "tableau" (French: "board"), in contrast to more historic Baccaratt games where each hand is associated with an individual who makes drawing choices. Player (punto) and Banker (banco) are simply designations for the two hands dealt out in each coup, two outcomes which the bettor can back; Player has no particular association with the gambler, nor Banker with the house.
Punto banco is dealt from a shoe containing 6 or 8 decks of cards shuffled together with 8 decks being most commonly used. A cut-card—a coloured (often yellow) piece of plastic, the same size as a regular card, and which is used in shuffling—is placed in front of the seventh-last card, and the drawing of the cut-card indicates the last coup of the shoe. For each coup, two cards are dealt face up (or equivalent) to each hand, starting from "player" and alternating between the hands. The croupier may call the total (e.g., "Five Player, three Banker"). If either Player or Banker or both achieve a total of 8 or 9 at this stage, the coup is finished and the result is announced: Player win, a Banker win, or tie. If neither hand has eight or nine, the drawing rules are applied to determine whether Player should receive a third card. Then, based on the value of any card drawn to the player, the drawing rules are applied to determine whether the Banker should receive a third card. The coup is then finished, the outcome is announced, and winning bets are paid out
Once play begins, one player is designated as the "banker". This player also deals. The other players are "punters". The position of banker passes counterclockwise in the course of the game. In each round, the banker wagers the amount he wants to risk. The other players, in order, then declare whether they will "go bank", playing against the entire current bank with a matching wager. Only one player may "go bank". If no one "goes bank", players make their wagers in order. If the total wagers from the players are less than the bank, observing bystanders may also wager up to the amount of the bank. If the total wagers from the players are greater than the bank, the banker may choose to increase the bank to match; if he does not, the excess wagers are removed in reverse play order.