Spread punters flee the Tories

Spread punters flee the Tories

    The latest prices suggest an overall Tory majority of just 26 seats

After a morning of considerable activity on the commons seats spread betting markets there’s been a sharp move against the Tories and towards Labour as punters reappraise the new situation following the bank bail-out and how it is being viewed both in the UK and overseas.

Only two of the three main markets – Sporting Index and Spreadfair – have been open this morning. IG – which used to regard itself as a big player – simply has not been accepting bets either way and there are no figures to report.

My view, shared by other punters it seems, is that there’s little doubt that Brown and Labour will get polling boosts in the coming weeks and that that will affect views of the general election outcome.

The commons seats spread-betting are where the serious punters go to try to make money by using their political forecasting skills. The amount of money at risk can be far greater than what we see with conventional bookmakers or even the betting exchanges.

It can be a costly business. This morning I had to transfer a fair bit of cash to Sporting Index and IG Index to cover the losses incurred when I closed down my Labour sell and Tory buy positions on Sunday. Thankfully I got in early and since then the Tory price has slipped a further five seats.

This is a complicated form of betting but one that can be immensely rewarding and profitable if you can anticipate trends – particularly the media narrative that has so much impact on the polls.

Today and for the next few weeks at least Brown and Labour are riding a high and it’s going to be hard for the opposition parties to get a look in. Only a mug bets against trends like this.

Mike Smithson

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