Archive for the 'Commons seats spreads' Category


Punters continue to sell CON seats on the spreads – now down to 102 majority with Spreadex

Friday, May 26th, 2017

The latest polling has caused a big sell of CON seats on the spread markets. With
Spreadex it is now 373-379 seats. At the weekend the buy level was more than 400.

SportingIndex has it slightly higher at 373-379 which means that my sell bet at 393 placed on Saturday night is now showing a nice profit.

What’s nice about this form of betting is that you can take and pocket your profits well before the election has taken place.

The risk at the moment is that other pollsters might show a larger CON lead which could cause the price to move up.

Mike Smithson


Tories heading for 124 seat majority according to spread betting markets

Thursday, May 25th, 2017

With the campaign starting to get underway again it is perhaps worth reminding ourselves that we have a dearth of up to date polling. There’ve only three national surveys that were carried out after the CON manifesto launch last week. These have been ICM and the Survation online poll for the Mail on Sunday and the phone one for Good Morning Britain.

We’ve also had the YouGov Wales poll which had LAB with a bigger margin over CON than EdM’s party achieved at GE2015. The YouGov S Times poll was only partly carried out after the manifesto launch with the later dementia tax narrative.

Latest CON seats spreads SportingIndex 383-390 Spreadex 383-389

Latest LAB spreads both SportingIndex and Spreadex 172-178

Latest LD spreads both SportingIndex 14-17 and Spreadex 13.5-16.5

The latest spread betting markets suggest that the Tories are heading for a 124 seat majority – a bit down on its peak but still incredibly comfortable.

The spread betting market are where the serious punters with deep pockets generally do their gambling. Party seat numbers are traded like stocks and shares with the top figure being being the buy price and the bottom one the sell price.

Hopefully we’ll see some new polls fairly soon – maybe overnight. My guess is that the Tories will benefit from the inevitable huge media presence that Mrs. May had during the campaign suspension. She wasn’t party politicking but this should help the blue causes.

The suspension has, though, rather thwarted the Tory plans try to “remind” us of some of Mr. Corbyn’s historical links.

Mike Smithson


CON drops 9 seats on the spread-betting markets following the first post manifesto polling

Sunday, May 21st, 2017

Spread betting is the form of gambling for those with deep pockets that are ready to take big risks and are attracted by the idea that the more you are right the more you win.

Unfortunately the converse is the case. The more you are wrong the more you lose so developments like the latest post-manifesto polling are being keenly watched by spread betting punters.

For most of the campaign the Conservative spreads have been hovering around the 400 Mark suggesting a massive majority of 170 or more.

That’s now moved a notch backwards following the publication overnight of the Survation and YouGov polling. The latter survey was carried out on Thursday and Friday so only partially reflected the post manifesto reaction.

My guess is that the downward trend could continue if other polls indicate the same trend. If not then we could see a reversal.

Mike Smithson


LDs now down ten seats on the Commons spread markets since the campaign started

Monday, May 8th, 2017

The biggest loser on the betting markets since the election was called have been the Lib Dems. The opening prices were at 26 to 29 seats following the widespread assumption that the party would be in a position to appeal to remain voters from either Labour or the Conservatives.

Even last Thursday, local election day, the Lib Dems were on 24 SELL and 27 BUY. Although they put on votes on that day they saw a net loss of seats which has prompted a mass selling.

With both SpreadEx and Sporting Index they are now at 16-19 seats.

You can see a situation on June 8th where the party increases its vote share substantially from GE2015 but struggles to achieve seat gains.

I am waiting until we know what has happened with the Crown Prosecution Service which is considering bringing charges against GE2015 CON agents and candidates following the CON expenses investigation.

If this happens it will have a big impact in the seats concerned most of which were previously Lib Dem.

Mike Smithson


The final spread levels on general election day had a CON lead of 19 seats, 80 seats short of what actually happened

Friday, June 5th, 2015

May 7th 2015: The afternoon when CON seat buyers panicked

A lot has been written about the predictive nature of betting markets – a theory I do not subscribe to.

Just look at how the Commons seats spreads moved on general election day and the comparison with the actual result.

My understanding is that there was a huge panic on the afternoon of May 7th which led to a huge amount of selling by punters who had long CON buy and LAB sell positions. This led to a change in the prices reducing the CON lead on the market from 25 seats to 19 seats.

As we all know the election produced a CON seat lead of 99 seats and an overall majority.

Mike Smithson


The SNP continues to be the big mover in the commons seats’ spread markets – up ten seats in five weeks

Friday, January 2nd, 2015

The continuation of strong polling for the SNP before Christmas has reinforced the move upwards in the latest spread prices from Sporting Index. It is now exactly ten seats higher than it was in the last week in November.

Clearly this is driven by the polls and the absence of bad news for Sturgeon and her party. The fact that the election of Labour’s new Scottish leader, Jim Murphy, has failed to dent the SNP’s polling position is clearly helping.

There is, however, something of a mismatch between the spread markets and the odds being offered on individual seats. I plan to do a count but I’ve not seen much evidence of SNP moving to favourite in specific constituencies.

Mike Smithson

Since 2004 – The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble


SportingIndex cuts the UKIP spread again in effort to entice elusive purple buyers

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

Meanwhile the CON spread gets even closer to LAB

I’m just on the train back from London after having a fascinating chat with the guy who runs the political spread markets at Sporting Index. This is the form of betting that I like the most because it is all about numbers and the more you are right the more money you make. Unfortunately the converse is also the case!

Lots of interesting new markets are on the way and he’d be delighted to hear from PBers of any idea that they might have. I suggested LD deposit losses and his first question was how you’d go about working out an opening price.

On the main Commons seats spread featured above he said that the most striking feature was the almost total lack of UKIP buyers – hence today’s drop by one seat. He compared that with the Cleggasm surge ahead of GE2010 which fortunately for SPIN saw a rush to buy the LDs at a peak of more than 100 seats.

The essence of spread betting is that you buy or sell and your profits/losses are determined by the difference. Thus if you bought CON at today’s 285 level and they get 310 you’ll make 25 times your stage level. You can get out of a bet at almost any time and if you’ve made a profit you can pocket the difference.

But be warned. Spread betting can be very risky as I found to my cost on election day 2001.The messages were coming through that turnout was very much down and I interpreted that as being good for the Tories. This became my biggest ever betting loss.

Mike Smithson

2004-2014: The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble


At GE2010 political gamblers and the bookies seriously understimated LAB

Thursday, November 7th, 2013

Those who “bought” LAB seats made a packet

About once a month, it seems, like this morning I get called by a journalist who wants to know whether the general election betting prices reflect over-optimism by Tory supporters about their party’s projects. What had happened last time he asked?

The theory we have heard so many times before: Those with the money to risk on the spread betting markets are probably richer and, “therefore”, Tory

This prompted me to dig out some figures which appear in the chart above. These seem to give credence to the notion there’s a bias in the betting towards the Tories and against LAB.

Maybe. Maybe not but I’m not totally convinced. For five years earlier it was a different story. The spread markets as the polls opened had the Tories on 190 seats mid point. Michael Howard’s party secured 198.

At the 2001 election the spread markets, where the seats a party will get are traded like stocks and shares, overstated the Tories.

As to the current betting which suggests that the Tories have a 25‰ chance of an overall majority I think that there’s a large level of wishful thinking.

Mike Smithson

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