Internets political stock market sees record volumes on contracts focused
on whether Trump will be impeached while Ladbrokes has that as
Gamblers on both sides of the
Atlantic are ramping up wagers in niche online markets over whether Donald
Trump will serve out a full term as US president in the wake of controversies
surrounding the dismissal of FBI director James Comey.
Some, such as
the online political stock market PredictIt, have seen record volume during the
last two days on contracts focused on whether Trump will be impeached. Others
based in the UK are drawing bets on the less specific question of whether Trump
remains in office until his term expires in January 2021.
on PredictIt titled Will Donald Trump be impeached in 2017? saw
volume of more than 100,000 contracts in the last 24 hours after reports of a
memo written by Comey that said Trump had asked him to end the Federal Bureau
of Investigations probe into ties between former White House national
security adviser Michael Flynn and Russia.
At one point early on
Wednesday, the price of a yes contract on the impeachment question
jumped to a record 33 cents, implying a 33% probability that Trump would be
impeached. That compares with only 7% just over a week ago.
By late in
the day, however, the price had slid back to 27%, just above where it ended
late Tuesday at 24%.
PredictIt is jointly run by Washington political
consultancy Aristotle and Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand. All
of its users are registered US voters.
The bookmaker Paddy Power
Betfair said its customers had laid out more than 5,000 pounds ($6,470) on an
early departure for Trump in the hours after it was reported Trump had asked
Comey to shut down the FBIs investigation of Russia ties.
the question of whether Trump will make an early exit has drawn more than
$270,000 in wagers while a related question on whether Trump will leave in
2017, 2018, 2019 or 2020 or later has garnered more than $480,000.
British betting firm Ladbrokes cut the price of a Trump impeachment to
odds-on at 4-5 from 11-10, equivalent to about 56% probability that Trump will
be removed from office.
Political punters are wondering how many
more scandals can Trump overcome, said Ladbrokes spokeswoman Jessica
And despite the short price on offer, money has poured in
for the president to be impeached, leaving us with little option but to cut the
What is PredictIt?
PredictIt is a real money
site that tests your knowledge of political and financial events by letting you
make and trade predictions on the future.
The US Commodity Futures and
Trading Commission provided a special exemption for PredictIt in 2014, based in
part around its status as non-profit, and the small amount of money which can
However, while that permits it at the federal level, State
law still precludes such markets in many places in the US. In Alabama,
Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, New York, New Jersey,
Nevada, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, and Washington it would be
considered Gambling most likely, and thus be illegal.
By contrast, the
far larger InTrade was sued - and then closed - by the CFTC as an illegal
market (it tried to protect itself by being in Ireland, but that
The PredictIt platform, which includes all of the information,
content, features and code contained within it are owned and operated by
Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand.
10% fee on profit.
For U.S. traders, withdrawals are
subject to a 30-day holding period after your initial deposit and a 5 percent
For non-US based customers withdrawals are subject to a
60-day holding period after your initial deposit, a 5 percent processing fee
and a $40 wire transfer fee!