Betting on politics: who will win the Lewisham East by-election?

Matthew Partridge casts an eye over the odds for the candidates in the Lewisham East by-election.


Ladbrokes has put a new market up on Labour's vote share in next month's by-election in the London seat of Lewisham East. It is offering 5/4 (44%) on 60%-70%, 2/1 (33%) on 50%-60%, 4/1 (20%) on 40%-50% 20/1 (5%) on 30%-40% and 50/1 (2%) on under 30%. This was once a marginal seat, and was held by the Conservatives from 1983 to 1992. But it has been consistently trending towards Labour, which won 67.2% at last year's general election.

Given these results, and the fact that Labour now controls every seat on Lewisham council (as well as having its candidate for mayor elected with 54% of the first choices), I'd be inclined to think that it will be almost certain to get somewhere between 50% and 70% of the vote, probably in the low 60s. I'd therefore bet on both 50%-60% and 60%-70% for combined odds of 77.8%. I'd recommend that you split a £10 betting unit £5.72 in favour of 60%-70%and £4.28 in favour of 50%-60%.

Subscribe to MoneyWeek

Become a smarter, better informed investor with MoneyWeek.

As noted previously, Ladbrokes is also offering money on who will be Labour's candidate. The party has shortlisted four candidates: Sakina Sheikh, Janet Daby, Claudia Webbe and Brenda Dacres, which makes it a bit easier to handicap this contest.

I'd suggest you put your money on Sheikh at 13/8 (38%) and deputy mayor Daby 5/2 (28.5%) for combined odds of 66.7%. Both candidates seem to be campaigning energetically. Out of a £10 betting unit, I'd suggest that you put £5.71 on Sheikh and £4.29 on Daby.




How long can the good times roll?

Despite all the doom and gloom that has dominated our headlines for most of 2019, Britain and most of the rest of the developing world is currently en…
19 Dec 2019

Beyond the Brexit talk, the British economy isn’t doing too badly

The political Brexit pantomime aside, Britain is in pretty good shape. With near-record employment, strong wage growth and modest inflation, there is …
17 Oct 2019

Trading: you can be sure of Shell

Oil won’t stay low forever – and Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell looks both lean and cheap.
5 Apr 2020
UK Economy

Coronavirus: Big Brother widens his embrace

The coronavirus crisis has led to a massive expansion of the state into all areas of daily life. Should we be worried?
4 Apr 2020

Most Popular


House prices and Covid-19

The housing market is in deep freeze – what happens when it thaws out?
5 Apr 2020

Three things matter for the UK housing market now – and “location” isn’t one of them

The UK housing market is frozen. And when it does eventually thaw out, the traditional factors that drive prices will no longer apply. The day of reck…
1 Apr 2020

What does the coronavirus crisis mean for UK house prices?

With the whole country in lockdown, the UK property market is closed for business. John Stepek looks at what that means for UK house prices, housebuil…
27 Mar 2020
Global Economy

The MoneyWeek Podcast – Russell Napier: how much debt is too much?

Merryn talks to financial strategist and author Russell Napier about the huge levels of debt embedded in the global economy, the governmental response…
3 Apr 2020