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Monday, April 18, 2005

Prediction Markets And Betting Odds On The Next Pope

As the conclave of cardinals begins, a lot of people are wondering who's going to be the next Pope. I've linked to articles recently that talk about prediction markets, and I regularly use TradeSports to show my classes how markets process information.

Tradesports trades a number of contracts whose payoffs are based on papal election outcomes. Based on the latest trades, the conservative German Cardinal, John Ratzinger seems to be the current favorite, followed by the Nigerian Cardinal, Francis Arinze.

However, since the voting by the cardinals is held under maximum secrecy, I'm doubtful as to the ability of prediction markets to provide useful information in this case.

But, it's still fun to watch.

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