US Presidential Odds: Donald Trump Upsets Political Betting Markets

Jim Makos

Thursday, September 17, 2015 11:17 PM GMT

Things have changed though just before summer, when a fresh participant joined the race to the presidency, quickly becoming extremely popular amongst the punters.

On the US Presidential race, Hillary Clinton remains the undisputed favorite (2.20) in the elections' betting market during the last few months. A couple of steps behind the former secretary of state, the Republican candidate, Jeb Bush, comes up (5.50). Not long ago, almost everyone was talking about a close call and a duel between the two opponents. Things have changed though just before summer, when a fresh participant joined the race to the presidency, quickly becoming extremely popular amongst the punters. At present, his eventual victory would pay 6 to 12 times return on your money, whereas back in May the odds fluctuated between 50 and 100.

His name, you’ve guessed it right, is Donald Trump.

Let us take one thing at a time. A steady trend in favor of Clinton was obvious soon after the first bet on the US Presidential election was posted online, on August 17, 2012. In late 2013, the odds dived to the unprecedented 3.00 or so, while in 2014 the bets broke the 2.00 level, recording new lows. Several bettors at PaddyPower soon pushed the odds further down to 1.67, which are the lowest odds for Hillary Clinton recorded so far in the presidential race.

Thereafter, starting about a month ago, the situation completely changed and the odds bounced back, galloping towards higher levels. The bets stalled and consolidated around 1.90 for quite some time before a number of sportsbooks decided to increase their odds to 2.00. Currently, you can easily lay your money at 2.20 in multiple gaming operators, while Betfair seems to be the most “generous”, at 2.40.

A similar trend was evidenced as far as concerns the performance of Jeb Bush, George W. Bush’s brother. Initially, the bet was advertised at 20.0 in betting markets (2013). A steady decline followed until the odds stabilized temporarily around 10.0 by the end of 2014. While the drop seemed having reached a bottom at 4.00 in early summer, in the last weeks the odds unexpectedly increased back to 5.50. Some sportsbooks have even suspended betting on the Presidential race till further notice at the time of writing.

 

And, out of nowhere…

 

Donald Trump Becomes the Third Top Pick of the Bettors
Of course, the aforesaid slump on the odds of the top two favorites is fully in link with the sharp decline of Donald Trump's betting odds. The new challenger easily pushed Joe Biden (15.0) out of the lead of favorites, who occupied the third place at the time.

This extreme upset recorded on the betting market, in favor of a possible Trump’s prevalence, is both impressive as well as extraordinary. That kind of odds shortening is astonishingly rare particularly in the long-term betting markets and especially in political betting! In my 15 years on the field, closely following the gaming industry worldwide, I cannot recall such a betting odds' decline when discussing an election race!

The very first bets of 2013 and 2014 will pay those who took the risk 100-fold. In fact, Stan James went one step further, offering stakes at 251.0 in December 2014, for those risk-seeking bettors willing to cash in for Donald Trump.

In March 2015, a slight preference in favor of Trump was recorded for the first time, when a number of sportsbooks offered the presidential pick at 51.0. Ever since, as the popularity of Trump was increasing, this preference exploded to become a raging performance starting in July and thereafter. One bookmaker after another lowered their odds, while, on August 20, William Hill set the return on Trump's winning the presidential race to single-digit odds for the first time, to a mere 8.00!

The decline seems to have no ending, as the same online sportsbook has now dropped the odds to 6.00 at the beginning of September, while the remaining sportsbooks soon followed. One-digit return on the event Donald Trump becoming the next President of the United States is what you can expect betting on right now.

Is Trump’s momentum strong enough to surpass the leading Republican candidate, Jeb Bush? Could Trump finally come face to face with his Democratic opponent in the presidential race's betting market? So far, bets point to Jeb Bush as the favorite to win the nomination of the Republican Party, even though Trump managed to leap forward to the second place of the odds-on favorites.

Meanwhile, there's another interesting aspect of the elections, which might have missed the attention of most punters. I'm talking about betting on the sex of the next President of the United States. The top picks indicate a man at the office. However, one should not underestimate the drifting odds of those wagers, ever since this specific bet was introduced, two years ago.

Without any doubt whatsoever, Clinton’s performance in the Presidential race would determine the course of this political betting market. The crucial question however stands. Could Trump turn the odds around switching places with the former first lady or at least with his party's competitor? Nearly 14 months before the presidential elections, one thing is for sure: punters won't get bored. Not a bit!