Archive for the 'Betting' Category


With the Alabama polls showing the Farage-backed Moore 3.8% ahead the betting makes him an 83% chance

Monday, December 11th, 2017

The big political event this week is tomorrow’s special election in Alabama to choose the next senator. This is critically important because currently the split in the Senate is 52 Republican to 48 Democrat. If the controversial, Moore who has been accused of having sex with girls as young a 14,loses then that would become 51-49 making it harder for controversial moves to get through.

During the primary Nigel Farage spoke at a meeting in the state on behalf of Moore who is facing a huge campaign from the Democratic Party who sense the possibility of a victory.

Whichever ever way it goes it is being argued that the outcome would be bad for the Republicans. This is from from Dan Balz in the Washington Post

“For Republicans, there likely can be no truly good outcome. If Moore wins, the party will have preserved the seat but will be saddled with a new senator under a cloud of allegations, including assaulting a teenager many years ago as well as a pattern of pursuing teenagers half his age when he was in his 30s. If he wins and is sworn in, he probably will face an ethics investigation that will keep the controversy alive until his fate is resolved and perhaps much longer than that. For the Republicans, it’s a hot mess.

If Moore loses, the GOP would be spared his presence in the Senate. But the result will have inflamed the anti-establishment forces led by former White House chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon, deepening antagonisms that continue to roil the party. A Jones victory also would tarnish the president, who has enthusiastically endorsed Moore and campaigned near the Alabama border Friday night in a display of that support. Additionally, a Jones victory would put the Republican majority at greater risk in 2018…”

Alabama is traditionally a very strong Republican state and it is only because Moore is the candidate that this could be in doubt. All but a couple of the most recent polls have him ahead what are the current polling average gives him a 3.8% lead.

Everything is dependent on turnout and whether the Republicans can get their voters out in an election so near to Christmas for someone so controversial.

The election is currently the most active political market on Betfair with Moore at the moment (0640 GMT) rated as an 83% chance.

Mike Smithson


Nick Robinson says the “very widespread expectation in Westminster is that Damian Green will resign in the next few days”

Sunday, December 10th, 2017

After her best week as PM, it might be back to the status quo for Mrs May.

The Sunday Times are reporting that

A male associate of Damian Green has approached the Cabinet Office inquiry into the conduct of the deputy prime minister and spoken in support of the woman who had accused the politician of sexual misconduct.

The man, who works in a sensitive position and does not want to be named, has talked to Sue Gray, the civil servant leading the investigation that could end Green’s ministerial career.

The Sunday Times understands that the man spoke to Gray, director-general of the propriety and ethics team in the Cabinet Office, after becoming uncomfortable with anonymous attacks on Kate Maltby, a journalist and academic. She had accused Green of making inappropriate advances.

After Maltby made her disclosures in The Times, she was accused publicly by a “Tory source” of being “desperate to be well known” and warned to be “more careful the next time she’s asked to write a piece trashing a decent man”.

The Sunday Times understands that Gray is examining whether Green or his aides had any involvement in the criticism of Maltby, who is 30 years his junior. She declined to comment this weekend.

It is looking like death by a thousand cuts for Damian Green, and supports Nick Robinson’s view, which was expressed before this latest story on Damian Green broke. I suspect Mrs May will take a very dim view if turns out that Damian Green or his aides were involved in the attacks on Kate Maltby after she made her allegations.

The past few days probably represent Mrs May’s best week in politics since she became Prime Minister losing Damian Green will take the gloss of that and impact the way the government operates if she loses her long time friend. The other question is will David Davis quit in protest if Damian Green quits?

Looking for a new First Secretary of State and Brexit Secretary will complicate Phase II of the Brexit talks will present Mrs May with real challenges, and with a few articles this morning suggesting the Brexiteers aren’t happy with the deal so far and it could lead to a leadership challenge, without Damian Green at her side she might be vulnerable to such a challenge.

Ladbrokes make Damian Green 4/6 as the next cabinet minster to exit the cabinet, having backed him at 3/1 I’m not looking to up, the potential dead heat rules make the 4/6 look very unappealing, David Davis is second favourite at 3/1, such odds are unappealing for the same reasons.



Ex-CON leadership favourite, DDavis, slips to just 6.6% chance on Betfair

Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

Commons contempt moves start against Davis

Only DGreen seen as more likely by punters to be next Cabinet exit

Mike Smithson


Moore remains odds-on favourite in Alabama even though the Dems are spending nearly ten times as much on TV ads like these

Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

Will the big spending Dems campaign produce a sensation?

The biggest current political betting markets in the UK are not about British politics at all. They were about the US with Trump’s survival being number one and the Alabama senate race, which takes place next Tuesday, number two.

The latter has the advantage of being settled very soon. Punters have only a few days to wait until they know whether their gamble has paid off or not.

At the moment on Betfair the Republicans, with their controversial candidate, is rated as an 80% chance with the Democratic man on 20%.

The polling has this very tight with most showing a small GOP lead though some have Moore behind.

In normal times with a normal candidate the GOP would be an absolute certainty. This is very strong territory for the party and it is only the allegations of sexual transgressions by several women that have given the Democratic Party any hope.

Everything is going to depend on turn out next Tuesday and here it is hard for pollsters to get this right.

My sense is that the Democratic campaign with ads like the ones above are designed to impede turnout amongst Republican voters and persuade Democratic ones that their man had a chance.

My view is that at current odds that the betting value is with the Democratic party who are worth a punt.

Mike Smithson


Iff this is true then the chances of a 2018 general election have increased, the DUP will bring down Mrs May’s government

Monday, December 4th, 2017



Your regular reminder that laying the favourite in the next Tory leader market is usually very profitable

Sunday, December 3rd, 2017

Ignoring the polls and laying the favourite for the next Tory leader has been consistently a profitable route for nearly half a century.

The picture above is from ConHome’s regular polling on the next Tory leader from October 2015, Osborne would lead for five months in a row, yet he failed to become David Cameron’s successor.

Now people might argue Osborne’s prominent role in the Remain campaign put the kibosh on him succeeding David Cameron but he’s not the first favourite to fail to become Tory leader. David Davis, Michael Portillo, Ken Clarke, Michael Heseltine, and Willie Whitelaw, all of those were usurped by someone who a few months was considered a rank outsider, such as John Major, IDS, William Hague, Margaret Thatcher, and David Cameron. David Davis in particular will remember that in June 2005 he was the odds on favourite at 1/2 to be Michael Howard’s successor.

Back in November 2015 I wrote that winning the Tory leadership is often more about who you aren’t rather than who you are, and it isn’t hard to see a stop Boris or JRM candidate winning by default.

My assumption is that the next Tory leadership contest won’t be until 2019, so it might be wise to look at the current leadership polling and betting markets and assume whoever leads and is the favourite won’t be Theresa May’s successor. Just look at the odds on the next Tory leader in October 1974, a little over three months later the 50/1 outsider won.



The last 48 hours makes me content to keep on laying David Davis as next PM/Tory leader

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

‘He’s useless. He’s absolutely useless. He’s as useless as a marzipan dildo.’

Whenever I think of David Davis I’m reminded of the marzipan quote by Malcolm Tucker from The Thick Of It, which is why I’ve been laying David Davis as next PM/Tory Leader markets for quite some time and the above tweets seem to reinforce those views.

Of course it maybe a case on confirmation bias on my part but then we have Jacob Rees-Mogg saying “(There is a) growing concern that Her Majesty’s government seems in these negotiations to be dancing to the tune of the European Commission.”

Today’s Times reports that

The British proposal is understood to commit the government to work towards “avoiding regulatory divergence” in Ireland after Brexit even if the rest of the UK moves away from European rules. This would involve the government devolving a package of powers to Northern Ireland to enable customs convergence with the Irish Republic on areas such as agriculture and energy…

…The outlines of a “standstill” transition arrangement, effectively prolonging British EU membership, are ready to be tabled after the expected sign-off on the principles of a withdrawal deal at the December summit. EU sources said that the transition deal could be agreed in January before negotiations begin on a future trading relationship.’

Ensuring Northern Ireland has a different relationship with the EU than the rest of the UK doesn’t seem the sort of thing the Conservative and Unionist Party of Great Britain and Northern Ireland should be promulgating, and I’m sure effectively prolonging the UK’s membership of the EU will not enamour David Davis to Leavers.

Much like Boris Johnson’s tenure as Foreign Secretary is confirming all the worst fears about Prime Minister Boris Johnson, David Davis’ tenure as Brexit Secretary is confirming all the worst fears about a Prime Minister David Davis, incompetent and the Minister for Winging It (Badly), bet accordingly with those two.


PS – It was also a bad 48 hours for Gavin Williamson, who as Chief Whip was the genius behind the government boycotting opposition day debate votes that has led to these problems for the government.  Quite frankly his ‘cleverness’ is the epitome of a Pyrrhic victory with could see David Davis held in contempt of Parliament. He seems another definite lay on the next PM/Tory leader markets.


Betting on Time’s person of the year

Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

Following Friday night’s tweet by Donald Trump I thought it’d be fun to look at the betting markets on the winner of Time’s Person Of The Year Award. I can understand why the hashtag MeToo is favourite, in 2011 ‘The Protester’ won, so groups and collectives can win.

My tip is Colin Kaepernick at 14/1, the American Football player who began the ‘taking the knee’ protests over racial injustices in America, it enraged Donald Trump a lot, which led to even more protests by players in the NFL. Colin Kaepernick was recently awarded GQ’s 2017 Citizen Of The Year so his protests has earned him awards already.

Just a bit of warning, I’ve been betting on Time’s person of the year for around a decade, and I’ve only had one winner in that time, Donald Trump who won the award last year.