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viscovery ♡ 13 ( +1 | -1 )
Chess players earnings Just wondering how much do professional chess players earn?
Say the top 20 in the world.

How does it compare with poker or pool?
potus ♡ 15 ( +1 | -1 )
Not sure about chess, but the prize pool for the Poker world championship was about $70,000,000, $7,000,000 of which went to the winner - better to be good at poker
chessnovice ♡ 12 ( +1 | -1 )
... Of the three professions, poker is most likely the most profitable career. Chess, I would imagine, is the least.
ccmcacollister ♡ 339 ( +1 | -1 )
My friend ... who is an FM in Chess and has won some big tournaments, such as First Expert at the National Open (beating HITECH, the hot computer of its day, in the process!) has told me several times, if your in it for the money you should take up Golf rather than Chess :)
Well I guess his golf game was not so good?! Because he did go into playing Poker, and says many of the skills of Chess transfer to that game. And he has won considerably more playing poker, for less time and effort. It would not surprise me if Poker winnings of three years have not exceeded Chess winnings of 30 years. Despite being good enough to slug it out with GM's and often attain good or better positions.
From what I've seen, Chess Tournament wins are usually in the 1000's of dollars for a very big and prestigious national tournament like the World or National Opens, etc. But Poker winnings can easily be in the $10,000's for a similar national tourney.
Of course, the entry fee to such can easily be $500.00 as well. Chess Tournaments are generally less costly than that just to enter.
Poker does have several other bright spots if you are in it just for the money. It is much easier to learn the techniques of play since there is much less to learn. Memory for cards and ability to do mathematics in your head, especially percentages, is a must however, if you want to be really very good. Too many players are too sharp to just go "on feel" when calculating the possibility that a card will turn for you, or if the
current raise exceeds the value of the Pot.
But to a second bright spot; where as Chess "tells no lies" on the board ... in other words, it is pretty obvious if you are very good or not very good at it; Poker conversely seems to invite players to believe that they are much better than in reality, since anyone can have a few runs of exceptional luck and mistake it for skill.
Consequently, there seem to be more players to "earn" from. I am told that there is profit to be made anytime several players show up at a TEXAS HOLDEM game (of 10 players) who are simply not as skilled as you are. So, unlike Chess you do not have to be able to beat everyone or outplay everyone you meet. You could be better than half the players at a table and do very well ...I hear. This being when Cash is played for tho, not a tournament, where you do have to overcome the best players at your table to advance.
But Chess has its advantages too. Once a player has attained a certain notoriety, such as becoming an IM or GM perhaps .... or complaining about opponent's restroom habits during an International Match ... as the case may be .. :)
Then their primary income would probably not be coming from Tournament victories or matches ... unless they were able to play for the World Championship. Instead areas
where a Chess professional can make added income might include:
Simuls and lectures, Chess camps, authorship of books and columns, sponsorship, advertising such as Kasparov giving his name to a signature set ... a Chess computer ...and many books as a "co-author". Also, some have become involved in helping with the programing aor opening books of Chess computers. (Such as Hans Berliner, Joel Benjamin, Nick DeFirmian and others.)
For the specific Question tho, How Much Do They Earn?! That's a good question! Sorry ... }8-)
bogg ♡ 32 ( +1 | -1 )
ccmcacollister Craig:

I agree with nearly everything you said. The only item I would argue with is the profitability of authorship. Unless someone is planning to self publish there is very litle money involved, A great book might make the author 10k! Not much reward for the work involved.

bunta ♡ 87 ( +1 | -1 )
definately... Definately millionares for sure, not sure about the new players who have just made it in that top 20 list (e.g Magnus Carlsen, he was originally very poor, parents sold there house and car to fund for his chess tournaments but I think his alright now due to sponsorship etc).

But players like Kramnik, Leko etc are millionares for sure or even top 100 are doing fine by just playing chess, they can live off that because these guys get paid heaps to play in tournaments. Can you imagine how much Leko and Kramnik got paid for the World Championship in 2004 just to play, let alone we are not including the prize fund.

In 2008 Australian Chess Championships, GM Nakamura is rumoured to being paid almost 5-10 grand just to play and we are trying to attract him. The main reason why his coming to Australia is because he wants to participate in a Poker tournament lol. Pretty neat eh =]
ionadowman ♡ 95 ( +1 | -1 )
H'mmm... ... chessnovice hypothesised an interesting statistical probability. I wonder if it's really so, despite what poker players could earn (make/win/gain) on the professional circuit. It is true that in 2003 (I think) one Chris Moneymaker won something north of $3million on an initial investment of 10 bucks, but that has to be very rare. Most "dead money" put down their stake year after year and lose the lot (players had to put up a stake of $10,000 in the Texas Hold 'em Main Event the year Moneymaker won). It would be interesting to see how many fall into that last category.

With chess, you aren't likely to win big bucks (I've won some myself, though the amounts were trivial). But you aren't likely to lose big either. I don't know of any chess event in which participants have to find $10000. Some of the big guns might well ask for appearance money...