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Irish General Election 2016: Here’s what Paddy Power’s politics traders know about the state of play

All roads lead to February 26, says Paddy Power politics trader Ross Garvey

by Paddy Power | January 12, 2016

The Irish General Election now has a 92% chance of taking place in February, with the last Friday of the month the most likely day for the nation to go to the polls.

In September and October we saw a huge plunge on a November election. Punters took all prices from 10/1 in to 1/6. We breathed a sigh of relief from a trading point of view as Fine Gael leader and Taoiseach Enda Kenny has waited until the New Year to call the election.

‘Government after Next Election’ betting

  • From an opening price of 8/1 back in January 2012, a FG/FF Government is now favourite, having been as short as even money in the third quarter of 2015;
  • We have seen a steady flow of money since early 2014 and the price has fluctuated between 7/4 and evens throughout the last 18 months;
  • In recent weeks, FG/Lab has been the big mover. It’s gone from 9/2 in to with one South Dublin punter having a number of four-figure bets at all prices in between;
  • I am not as confident, being sceptical of FG/Lab getting back in alone. On a really good day they should hit around the 75 mark. The wouldn’t be for me, but experienced politics punters must be respected.

Taoiseach after Next Election

  • Enda Kenny’s price here has moved in line with the FG market moves across all markets, the Taoiseach receiving 65% of bets in the market;
  • Kenny was available at 11/10 back in 2012. The Mayo man is now to remain Taoiseach after the General Election.
  • We have seen plenty of ‘informed’ money at 1/4 and 1/6. Some customers look at it as ‘picking money up off the ground’.
  • He is to retain his seat in Mayo and is the shortest price out of any runner in the country.

The situation for Micheal Martin as ‘next Taoiseach’

  • It’s a very different scenario for Micheal Martin. The Cork man looks almost dead in the water in this market;
  • The public are very reluctant to part with their money at the current price of (11%);
  • More significant is the price of for Martin to retain his seat in Cork South-Central which has too gone almost untouched by punters;

Party seats

  • Fine Gael seats were as low as 40.5 towards the back end of 2014. Now at 57.5 with punters taking both sides of the market;
  • Fianna Fail seats were at the dizzy heights of 43.5 in mid-2013. Now 11 seats fewer and we have been well and truly filled in on the unders here;
  • Sinn Fein. Having been as high as 36.5 in the final quarter of 2014 they now sit on 23.5 and we continue to see money for the under selection here;
  • No surprise to see Labour struggling. A high of 16.5 now 10.5 and it appears punters have little faith, with 85% of bets on the unders.


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