Bookies declare the U.K. election is all over but the shouting

The “pound panic” is over.
British Prime Minister Theresa May and her pro-business Conservative party will overcome the wobbles of a dismal election campaign and win Thursday’s general election.
The country will avoid the perils of a Labour government under its radical-left leader, Jeremy Corbyn. It will also avoid the risks of a so-called “hung” parliament, which despite its promising name merely means a parliament in which no single party holds a majority.
These aren’t my prognostications. They’re just the best guesses of the one group of people here who have a decent chance of being correct.
No, not the opinion pollsters. The bookies.
U.K. Election: What's at Stake?
Under Britain’s deeply wise system, anyone age 18 or over can walk into a bookmaking shop on any main street and place a wager on the election (or anything else). The result is that millions of dollars get wagered one way or another. While the bookies’ odds are certainly fallible, they tend to be quite reliable, for the obvious reason that if they weren’t, you could profit handsomely at their expense.
Bottom line? The betting here now gives the Conservatives an 85% chance of winning an outright majority, the highest percentage for several weeks. The odds on the Conservatives, also called the Tories, have shortened noticeably in recent days.
The final polls, meanwhile, show the Tories beating Labour by six percentage points, according to the Telegraph newspaper’s poll tracker, and almost certainly a majority in Parliament.
The growing confidence that May’s Conservatives will win re-election have also caused the pound   and the London stock market    to rise. Investors and traders like certainty and continuity over the alternatives, and they typically prefer Conservative governments to Labour. That is especially true as Labour’s current leader is very much seen as coming from his party’s left.
If you’re planning to travel to the U.K., this is a great time to buy the pound as it remains on a deep post-Brexit discount. But if you’re looking to speculate on short-term currency moves, be aware things are rarely simple. The old traders’ maxim says you should “buy on the rumor, sell on the news,” which in this case would mean buying British assets before the election, but then cashing in your profits in the buoyant market soon after.
Britain will enter Brexit negotiations with the rest of the European Union shortly after the election, and there are plenty of reasons to think these may be turbulent. Many in Brussels want to punish the British for leaving the EU, especially in order to scare off any other countries thinking of leaving. Theresa May has already promised to be a “bloody difficult woman.”
All of this means someone owning British pounds or stocks probably faces plenty of headline risk and volatility following the election.

Theresa May’s party is the most euroskeptic of the country’s major parties, and a Tory government is likelier than the alternatives to risk a “hard Brexit,” meaning a sharp breach with the European Union. That probably wouldn’t be great for British investments either.
Naturally, the bookies’ predictions about Thursday’s election could be wrong. We shall have to see.
In America, of course, we are largely forbidden from gambling on elections, on account of all that “freedom” we’re supposed to have. I prefer the British way. Here you can bet on who will win the election, how many seats each party will get, who will be the prime minister after the election, and so on. There is almost no limit to the permutations of bets you can place.

It means you can liven up these dreary political campaigns by taking a sporting interest. It also means that when you meet one of those really boring people who insist they know what is “going” to happen, you can silence them by telling them to shut up and go bet.
I walked into Ladbrokes, the leading British main street bookie, this past weekend and placed a bet on the Tories, just because I could. I’ll let you know if my morals survive.
Bookies declare the U.K. election is all over but the shouting Bookies declare the U.K. election is all over but the shouting Reviewed by Alexander Von Stern on 09:52:00 Rating: 5