Kerry’s odds narrow after televised presidential debate
By abigail
The hugely popular race for online gamblers- that between Bush and Kerry running up to the US presidential elections, saw Thursday’s presidential debate make changes to current odds being offered. The debate which was widely televised and highly publicised saw Kerry making progress in the popularity stakes, and as such has affected the odds being offered on both men on most online sites.

Bush remains the overall favourite for the majority of bookies, but betting activity immediately after the debate shows that most people placing a wager thought that Kerry had outperformed Bush in their first televised debate. In terms of a benchmarking tool used for predicting the election’s even ual outcome, Anthony Curtis, a Las Vegas gambling expert believes that the swing in wagers is significant. He believes that most people taking a gamble on the presidential battle, are concerned only for their money, so rather than the bets indicating that a swarm of democrats decided to join the online gambling game, it shows that the majority of online gamblers thought that Kerry made a better impact in the debate, and that most viewers would have found him the more impressive candidate.

As such, Kerry’s odds have improved as a result, well from a democrat’s point of view anyway, with them shortening on most sites. As an average, US$100 on Kerry before the debate, would have won the punter US$200 should he win in November. That figure is now reduced to US$160. Curtis also commented on the level of online activity the debate drew from gamblers. He went to check activity on one site, the Olympic sportsbook, only to find “It was off the board, which tells us there was a lot of money coming in heavy on one side or another”. Betting options are taken down, or off the board, when it sees a very heavy level of activity, and the odds makers would want to adjust the odds as a result.

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