The money goes on an earlier Brown exit

The money goes on an earlier Brown exit

Sunday Express

The Brown “days as PM” index moves back ten days

With Gordon Brown having survived Labour’s June election disasters, Norwich North and the conference season the level of activity on the “when will he go” markets has been relatively light. The view was growing that he would lead Labour into the battle against Cameron’s conservatives.

That’s changed in the past 24 hours following the Number 10 statement about his eye problems. Could this, after all, be the pretext for him to step down early?

One key betting arena is the SportingIndex spread market on the total number of days Gordon Brown is in office in his current term as Prime Minister.

He’s already done 837 days and until news of his retina problems came out yesterday the spread was 995 – 1005 days – so the balance of the money was on about March 21st. The spread has now slipped back to 985 – 995 days so the mid-point is March 11th.

With this form of betting your winnings and losses are determined by multiplying the numbers of days that you are out by what actually happens. So should he leave office tomorrow a £10 unit sell bet would produce a profit of 985 minus 838 multiplied by £10. That equals £1,470. If you had taken the bet yesterday morning the profit in this scenario would have been £1,570.

If by any chance Brown remained in office until the last possible date for the general election, June 3rd, you would lose 1072 minus 985 multiplied by £10. That equals £930.

Given that the growing consensus is that general election day is May 6th the chances are that your maximum loss would be about £680. Whatever the market terms state that the last day will be June 3rd 2010.

I’ve become a seller because of the new uncertainty.

Mike Smithson

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