The Odds September 2004

Who Will be the Next President?

The market speaks
More

In the neck-and-neck race between George W. Bush and John Kerry, even the slightest twitch in poll numbers can make headlines. Pundits have been issuing declarations about who will win for months. But some election junkies believe that "political markets" are where the smart money turns for the best predictions. These markets allow one to bet on the election's outcome by buying futures whose value will be determined by a candidate's share of the two-party popular vote (in 1992 H. Ross Perot was included). Since 1988 the Tippie College of Business, at the University of Iowa, has run the Iowa Electronic Markets, the premier political-futures market. We took a look at its predictions on July 1 of each of the past four presidential-election years, and compared them with the actual results. (It turns out that political markets aren't much better than pundits.)

2004 July 1 Result

George W. Bush 52.8% TBD

John Kerry 46.0% TBD

2000 July 1 Result

George W. Bush 48.5% 49.7%

Al Gore 49.3% 50.3%

1996 July 1 Result

Bill Clinton 51.9% 54.7%

Bob Dole 43.5% 45.3%

1992 July 1 Result

Bill Clinton 28.0% 43.3%

George H.W. Bush 35.9% 37.7%

H. Ross Perot 35.0% 19.0%

1988 July 1 Result

George H.W. Bush 46.4% 53.9%

Michael Dukakis 50.4% 46.1%

Jump to comments
Presented by
Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Politics

More back issues, Sept 1995 to present.

Just In