Guido Van Rossum’s new Blog

Neopythonic. Thoughts from the creator of the Python programming language, now working for Google.

Buy Obama!

I noticed today that Electoral-Vote.com‘s composite of national polling is giving Obama a 338 to 185 lead in electoral votes.  The interesting thing about this is that Intrade‘s state-by-state prediction markets have been giving him roughly the same margin for several days, maybe a week — i.e. the prediction markets have been leading the polls.  Right now I think the only difference between EV’s electoral map and Intrade’s is North Carolina: EV calls NC a tie while Intrade gives the state to McCain.  It will be interesting to see if the polling in NC turns back toward McCain in the next week or so.

Looking at Intrade’s market for the overall outcome of the race, it’s worth noting the technical indicators (as I did in the primary).  Obama’s MACD is strongly positive, indicating upward momentum.

Intrade chart for Obama prediction market

Intrade chart for Obama prediction market

The MACD also shows Obama’s momentum went negative just after the Republican convention, and then reversed again around September 20, just as the shit was hitting the fan on Wall St.

One thing I wonder about the state-by-state prediction markets is how much liquidity they can have?  I mean, how many people are trading in these markets?  Are is there really enough volume in the West Virginia, Indiana, or Missouri markets to get accurate predictions?  Those states polls are all within the statistical margin of error (I think).  Florida and Ohio are also pretty close, but I guess those are more liquid, because they’re known battleground states.

Anyway, it will be fun to track this as the election gets closer.