Punters turn to Prodi as the polls open
Italians begin two days of voting this morning with the betting markets at least thinking that it is all over for the media tycoon turned politician, Silvio Berlusconi.
Under Italian law opinion polls are banned within two weeks of an election so there is no way of knowing whether Tony Blair’s holiday host of eighteen months ago is going to hang on.
The markets, as the chart shows, have been moving away from the incumbent but this might simply be the common pattern of punters following the favourite and not be based on any hard information.
We do know that Silvio was 3-4 points adrift in the last surveys to be published and his campaigning style in recent days has had the mark of desperation about it.
So should punters have piled behind Romano Prodi whose price has tightened to 0.28/1 before the markets closed? Personally I do not bet at those prices unless I’m pretty certain that I’ll get a return and in this case I do not know.
So I have had a little flutter on Silvio because the price, 3.7/1, is good and he’s a friend of Tony Blair – one of the luckiest politicians that I’ve ever seen. Last July when the 2012 Olympics looked a dead cert for Paris I wrote here – “put your money on lucky Tony”. I got a modest payday then – maybe the luck extends to his friends?
We’ll have to wait until tomorrow night.