With the contest to become the next Conservative leader heating up, punters are pouring money into the betting exchanges. In all, £3.85m has been wagered on Betfair on the identity of the next Conservative leader; on Smarkets £1.8m has been bet. At the moment Boris Johnson is the clear favourite, at 1.66 (60.2%) on Betfair, followed by Jeremy Hunt on 7 (14.2%), Andrea Leadsom on 9.4 (10.6%) and Michael Gove on 17 (5.8%).
There are also a lot of subsidiary markets to consider. A total of £53,000 has already been wagered on Betfair on who will make the final two, for example. In this case the leading candidates are Boris Johnson at 1.26 (79.3%), Hunt at 1.4 (71.2%), Michael Gove at 3.7 (27.2%), Rory Stewart at 3.9 (25.6%), Andrea Leadsom (pictured) at 6 (16.7%) and Dominic Raab at 10 (10%). There has even been £9,469 bet on the number of MP ballots, with four currently the favourite at 2.66 (37.5%), followed by three (36.2%).
As I have already made tips on the identity of the winner in the summer of 2017, and conscious of my rule not to bet on the same contest twice, I'm going to have to stand aside. I think it unlikely that Leadsom could make the final two, but the odds may have shifted by the time this reaches you, with the first ballot due to start to take place on Thursday, so I can't formally recommend betting against her.
Matthew graduated from the University of Durham in 2004; he then gained an MSc, followed by a PhD at the London School of Economics.
He has previously written for a wide range of publications, including the Guardian and the Economist, and also helped to run a newsletter on terrorism. He has spent time at Lehman Brothers, Citigroup and the consultancy Lombard Street Research.
Matthew is the author of Superinvestors: Lessons from the greatest investors in history, published by Harriman House, which has been translated into several languages. His second book, Investing Explained: The Accessible Guide to Building an Investment Portfolio, is published by Kogan Page.
As senior writer, he writes the shares and politics & economics pages, as well as weekly Blowing It and Great Frauds in History columns He also writes a fortnightly reviews page and trading tips, as well as regular cover stories and multi-page investment focus features.
Follow Matthew on Twitter: @DrMatthewPartri
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