Betting & Polls

Time for a quick roundup of what the betting markets and polls say about future elections.

  • Tradesports has the Christian Democrats a 90% favourite to win this weekend’s German election – suggesting a much more commanding position than the commentary has indicated.
  • The Poll Bludger has a neat roundup of the three NSW seats (aka "the Triple-M seats") which go to the polls this weekend.
  • Bryan Palmer has been following Centrebet’s odds on who will lead the Federal Liberal Party to the next election. He notes that for the first time, Costello’s odds are shorter than Howard’s (NB. the book is currently closed).
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12 Responses to Betting & Polls

  1. Sinclair Davidson says:

    That is good news on the CDU. The Australian (today) was indicating a bit of a tax policy bungle might cost them the election. Centrebet has Clark winning in New Zealand (bad news).

  2. Andrew Leigh says:

    I thought that Oz article was an interesting comment on the differences between Australia and Germany. I very much doubt that the Libs would lose an election because someone on the team (Malcolm, I’m thinking of you) advocated flat taxes.

  3. Sinclair Davidson says:

    I have a theory (I have many theories, but anyway): Radical tax reform can’t be successfully implemented from opposition. So in 1993 the GST failed, but succeeded in 1998. So the Aus article fits into my theory – but I’m pleased to see the market is predciting a win for the CDU. Tim and I (and others) are working on the GST elections, so my theory will have some results soon.

  4. Sacha Blumen says:

    Sinc, are you looking at elections in different countries as well? It might be more interesting – are there many examples of these elections in Australia?

  5. Sinclair Davidson says:

    Sorry, for delay Sacha. No, looking at Australia only, in particular the GST elections of 1993 and 1998. A multi-country study would be interesting, as you say, but we don’t have the date for that.

    Centrebet now predicting a National win in NZ.

  6. Sinclair Davidson says:
  7. Andrew Leigh says:

    Sinc, gotta love the fact that Centrebet quotes Justin Wolfers and I in each of its press releases.

    And I’m with Sacha – surely any GST elections paper should look at the destruction of the Progressive Conservatives in Canada, especially as you can get 1993 Canadian election survey here.

  8. Andrew Leigh says:

    Actually, that site won’t let you get the microdata for the surveys, but if you want it and have trouble getting it, let me know and I’ll see if I can track it down.

  9. Sinclair Davidson says:

    Good point on the Progressive Conservatives – as I Recall thay lost all but three seats. My research into the GST elections is primarily showcasing the work financed by the ARC.

    While I’m not calling the NZ eLection just yet, it appears Centrebet has not incorrectly predicted the outcome (that’s two ‘wrong’ outcomes in about ten years – still a pretty good record).

  10. Andrew Leigh says:

    True, though I guess we’d want to weight “wrongness” by the implied Centrebet probability. I’d be less inclined to criticise betting markets if a 45% chance won than if a 5% chance won.

  11. Sinclair Davidson says:

    I’ve given some thought to the ‘wrongness’ of the betting market. So I collected the AFL odds each week of the home and away season and will crunch numbers at some stage in the future (perhaps far future). Looking at prediction, outcome, extent of outcome etc.

  12. Andrew Leigh says:

    Very nice. There must be a literature on this (though I haven’t read it). Keep us all posted.

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