Something Strange Emerges When Looking Behind The "Brexit" Bookie Odds

Tyler Durden's picture

Two days ago we pointed out something surprising: according to Ladbrokes' head of political betting, Matthew Shaddick, the key catalyst that moved bookie odds on Monday morning, the first day after the suspended campaign in the aftermath of Jo Cox murder was resumed, "we took a £25,000 bet on Remain this morning which helped move the odds in their direction." This in turn unleashed a global asset surge, as markets rebounded on expectations the Leave campaign was losing momentum, even as actual polls - still neck and neck - did not validate such an observation.

Earlier today, Bloomberg confirmed as much:

Investors are piling money into bets on a victory for the “Remain” campaign, led by Prime Minister David Cameron. The pound has surged to a five-month high and European stocks just posted their biggest three-day gain in almost a year, with the U.K.’s benchmark index erasing its monthly decline. Bookmakers have shortened their odds on a vote to stay.


Polls, meanwhile, say the race is too close to call after a swing toward the “Leave” campaign came to an apparent halt last week following the murder of Labour Party lawmaker Jo Cox, a supporter of staying in the EU.


“Rising anticipation that ‘Remain’ will win the vote is driving the market,” said John Plassard, a senior equity-sales trader at Mirabaud Securities in Geneva. “Even if polls are close, people are paying more attention to the bookmakers because that was a much better predictor in past referendums.”

Talking to CNBC, Shaddik quantified the latest odds, which not surprisingly, put Remain's chances of success some three times greater than those of Leave: "at the moment, the odds are suggesting there is a 76 percent chance the U.K. will vote to stay in the European Union", once again caveating that this is "despite the polls still showing this is more or less a dead heat."

But is that really the case?

When one looks at the actual dynamics within the bookies, an odd divergence emerges. As Shaddick said, when looking at the underlying flows determining bookie odds, there is a very clear divergence when it comes to number of bets versus the amount of any given bet: "Although Ladbrokes has received a higher volume of bets to leave the EU, those making a punt on remain were placing higher financially larger. Shaddick revealed the average stake on a bet to remain was £450, compared to £75 on a bet to leave."

In other words, a few large bettors are skewing the bookie odds dramatically in the favor of Remain, even as the mass of bettors is betting on Leave, albeit with smaller cash amounts. Another way of putting it: a substantially outsized influence by a wealthy minority over the poor majority, just like in every other aspect of life.

Moments ago Ladbrokes confirmed as much when it pointed out that while the probability of Brexit remains at only 24%, two thirds or 62% of all bets being placed today are for Leave, the same as yesterday.


In a tweet, Ladbrokes also noted the stark divergence in bet sizes which is prompting the skew in the line, which while modestly less than what Shaddick told CNBC, still showed the average Remain vote as 5x greater than Leave:

One simple, if very cynical explanation, is the following: wealthy financial entities, including local banks and rich individuals, all of whom have an interest in keeping the UK in the EU and preserving the status quo, are placing far larger bets, even if their number is ultimately far lower than the number of people betting on Brexit. And in yet another case of reflexivity, with the public seeing that "Remain" is winning based on bookie odds, it is shifting popular sentiment toward Remain, even as the vast majority of bets is actually for Leave.

To be sure, none of this is broken down when either the investing or general public see the bookie odds: they just note 76% chance of Leave, when in reality almost two thirds of bookie bettors are voting to Leave, despite not having nearly the financial capacity to offset the bookie line as a result of the few massive bets being placed on the other side.

Of course, the actual referendum is a democratic, and popular one, not one where the rich can influence or buy votes, and as such far more important is not the skew to the Brexit or Bremain line due to outsized bets, but the actual number of bets in any direction. As such, it would be certainly useful to the British voting public to know not just the bottom line odds, but how they got to where they are, which as Ladborkes admits, it "has received a higher volume of bets to leave the EU."

Substantially larger in fact, some 62% to 38%, which also explains the dramatic divergence between the neck and neck polling and the actual Brexit odds which see Remain winning with whopping 76% odds. Because it is those 38% supports of Remain, whose outsized bets are driving not only the reported odds, but also global market sentiment.

The real question is whether that same wealthy minority which is influencing bookie odds will also be able to manipulate the final Referendum outcome in less than 24 hours.

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SilverDoctors's picture

One famous trader is still looking for a BREXIT vote to pass, unleashing chaos in the markets. 

Legendary gold trader Jim Sinclair stopped giving interviews several years ago.  
Sinclair came out of retirement this weekend for a huge interview with Greg Hunter to warn
A "FREE-FALL Financial Reset Is On the Immediate Horizon

Sinclair says our grandchildren's grandchildren will talk about this collapse... 

messystateofaffairs's picture

It's possible our grandchildrens grandchildren will continue to participate in the slow relentless collapse. We are into a global economic dark ages period, and it could go on for ages.

WordSmith2013's picture

"Nothing else throws a wrench into the Globalist’s machinery like a BREXIT"

NoDebt's picture

I can hardly wait till tomorrow when "Remain" wins this in a walk and we can get straight to the bitching, bellyaching and recriminations.

Nobody gets out of the EU alive.

MillionDollarBonus_'s picture

Attention British liberals and progressives: The time has come to protect European progress from the far-right who seeks to close Britain's borders and turn a blind eye to thousands of destitute refugees. Vote remain in tomorrow's referendum, and secure the future for Britain and Europe. If you're not convinced, then read today's article at the Accredited Times, which explains why remaining is the only logical choice for Brits:

NoDebt's picture

I'm with you, MDB.  That's so logical I wouldn't even allow people to make choices in the future.  We should just go back to having kings and emperors who, in their benevolance and wisdom, make the right choices for us.  Let's be honest, this whole thing started sliding downhill since the Magna Carta was signed.  What a fucking disaster it's become.

MillionDollarBonus_'s picture

I am actually of the opinion that this referendum shouldn't have been offered. It's simply not an appropriate issue for the British public to vote on, as all accredited economists agree that a 'leave' decision would be catastrophic for the British and European economies. This is a case when leaving economic decisions to the public leads to very bad policy.


froze25's picture

Those accredited economist that have been doing such a great job so far /s, hahahahhahaha I almost shot coffee out of my nose.

MANvsMACHINE's picture

Since the odds are weighted and the vote is not, assuming an unrigged vote, Brexit should win easily.  But we all know what happens when you assume anything.

Omen IV's picture

The FIX is in - larger bets from smaller group recognizes the inside control

ufos8mycow's picture

If they're willing to murder one of their own supporters to keep GB in the Union then do you really think they will let something like voting get in the way?

fleur de lis's picture

There is no way the globalist nomads will allow the Brits to escape the EU slave ship.
No way.
And when it's over and all the fake votes are counted in to Remain, the EU will crack down on the upstart Brits so hard that they will never again be able to organize an escape.
Brussels will pass a law making it illegal for any EU citizen to discuss such an escape.
Any noncompliant Brits will be bludgeoned into submission through financial, professional, social, or personal punishment.
And they'll get their media toadies and concubines to make it a spectacle.

kanselier's picture

Thats so wrong in so many ways!
We need more not less referendum's !
The fact that its such a bureaucratic institute totally destroys democracy! 

The Jaguar's picture

Yes, how dare the British people have a voice or a vote. You are out of place on this site spreading your backwards propaganda.

lasvegaspersona's picture



ALL decisions should be made by economists...accredited ones at that!!!....No other considerations such as liberty should ever be allowed to cloud the picture of perfect world. If only the world would look to would see the truth (OK they are in a bit of a rough patch right now...but later it will improve...)

auricle's picture


The notion there is an owner of knowledge. Just like the church tried for centuries to be the owners of knowledge, so too will the state fail at its latest attempt. 

RAT005's picture

MDB, you need your own custom made vote flipping machine so you get the respect you deserve! !

Living in USA can I cast a Brexit bet to add to the head count?

Amun's picture

"All you European citizens out there with your silly “In” badges  who liked being ruled by an autocratic collection of Jerrys and frogs : ifs its leave you should all be deported to Europe to make way for the migrants who appreciate  Britain and its long standing democracy , you lot deserve neither freedom or security , as you are willing to give it up so easily for trinkets like free roaming charges and cheap airfares ,

You are a disgrace to your ancestors who fought and died for these freedoms  both in the deep past and more recently the two world wars , you would  trade your mothers for a pot of gold ,what a shower , if the votes remain I and all my family we be going to a real country with a real government like that place that has more immigration than us, under the points system you keep banging on about  , you can keep the European province of airstrip one  as George Orwell warned us we would become and frankly you deserve no better , bunch of lefty proles"

Chris Dakota's picture
Chris Dakota (not verified) MillionDollarBonus_ Jun 22, 2016 12:54 PM

Chart of election is Leave wins.

although there is a chance they want to return at some point.

it's kinda murky

hardmedicine's picture

Absolutely , The EUROPEAN UNION IS hands down where the real future is for people..... and then we can be one step closer to that one world government that will finally and , let it come not a minute too soon, will bring peace on earth for everyone.  I don't know why the average guy on the street can't understand this.  All the elites agree and I for one have finally decided to join that train.  

Douglas1949's picture

Ahhhh - another product of the British State School (George Orwell predicted this - some might call it Stockholm Syndrome).

shining one's picture

A one world government may sound good, but consider who will be in charge.

hooligan2009's picture

we are living in the world of the perverse - our proeblems have beencaused by elected leaders following the advvice of economists and bankers .

what this means is that whatever yoiu think is good is bad and whatever is bad is good. welcome to "through the looking glass"

funny how not sending 8-10 billion a year to Brussels and not spending 50 billion a year complying with Brussels regulations (or was that Waraw, Helsinki, Paris or Madrid regulations) results in \ fall in GDP because....presumanly.... Britain is getting a HUUUUUUUUUGEEEE mutilple on those contributions and complaince costs in terms of favourable economic growth?

hmmm..i guess because of the rape pillage and plunder that has resulted in massive debt loads, enabled by central banks, it must mean the answer has always been PAY NO TAXES, DO NO WORK, PRINT MONEY


putaipan's picture


RedDwarf's picture

Please do not feed the Trolls.

shovelhead's picture

I guess I'm going to have to agree with you guys here because if voting has produced the abject failures in leadership of the last century, then the whole concept must be flawed from it's inception.

Maybe we could just sell lottery tickets for offices and fund the Govt. out of the proceeds. Everybody gets a shot at being President or a Congressman for 5 years.

We certainly can't do any worse than what we got now. I mean, what are the odds of getting a Marxist mulatto tool of the oligarchs in a lottery with Joe the Plumber having an equal shot at the job? At least Betty the enema nurse might bring some real compassion to the job for the average taxpaying asshole in America.

Something to think about.

lasvegaspersona's picture

I am obliged to confess I should sooner live in a society governed by the first two thousand names in the Boston telephone directory than in a society governed by the two thousand faculty members of Harvard University.

William F Buckley

OverTheHedge's picture

I'm quite keen on the idea of a one-year jury-duty style of government, where the legislators propose the legislation, but the people vote on each new law. Old-style Athenian political system. However, how do you stop the civil service from taking control? Career mandarins would be at the elbow of each newly appointed legislator, suggesting oh-so-helpfully what to do and how to do it. Democracy was never for the little people.....

css1971's picture

I think you just pipped him on that one.

DuneCreature's picture

Sweet fatherless babies that walk on water!!!!! .... Don't encourage him!

We know you're kidding, but he doesn't!

~ DC v2.0

Four chan's picture

not one man on the street or in a pub has told me they want to remain. if the vote is not rigged britain will remain free of the eu trap.

beemasters's picture

Of course the votes will be rigged. Learning from the past, traders seem to know insider's information better than anyone else.

Tarzan's picture

 “Rising anticipation that ‘Remain’ will steal the vote is driving the market,”

Had to fix that quote...

If you were putting your money on this you would be ignorant not to factor in the establishment's willingness, and ability, to cheat.

Eyeroller's picture

You probably don't live in Scotland or Wales, both socialist strongholds.

Amun's picture

Here is the "socialist" response from the decent Brits on the left: 

Lexit the Movie (The left case for Brexit )


"Are you SURE of what you are VOTING FOR. Unless you are Rich, Not Living in an EU Country, an EU Employee enjoying all the privileges and perks, or have never heard of TTIP someone has sold you a vision that is NOT TRUE. If you Vote to Stay in the EUROPEAN UNION, your RIGHT TO VOTE for change in the future will END. The decisions affecting your Life, your Family and Friends will all be decided by UNELECTED BUREAUCRATS, thatCANNOT ! ! be Removed by the UK or EU Population. 



search: TTIP WAR ON WANT what is ttip ?"




css1971's picture

Both with more sheep than people.

WTFUD's picture

MDB Anyone ever tried parking their Motorcycle between your Butt Cheeks? Just Asking not Threatening of course as i don't own a Motorcycle.

SoilMyselfRotten's picture

How do you do that without runnin over his Butt buddy BO?

lasvegaspersona's picture

BO is a catcher...he would not be in your parking spot....

kanselier's picture

A true progressif votes out, a true lefty is an out voter

damicol's picture

I keep telling you to fuck off you deaf stupid little faggot.

Clearly you understand fuck all, including simple English

Now get the fuck out of here and do not come back.


WTFUD's picture

Sometimes damicol it's good to hear a voice of reason (s/c ) . Keeps us on our toes! MDB is definitely working on HillDaBeast's Campaign.

Amun's picture

"Youngsters will be called up to the new EU army. We're getting EU tax codes. Cameron has signed fast track for Turkey and Merkel gives them visa free travel. EU Commissioners says they're taking over all health services, so end of our NHS. We are subsidising bankrupt countries, high unemployment, uncontrolled migration, terrorism. The EU bank is in meltdown printing money like confetti. The EU project has failed and heading for extinction. We are Great Britain and can stand on our own feet. Love your kids future. Love Britain. VOTE LEAVE!"

Amun's picture

Attention British liberals and progressives:



Lexit the Movie (The left case for Brexit )

king leon's picture

You forgot to hit the SARC button!!!

Paper Chaser's picture

The Handicapping patterns agree with your sentiment.  This situation of a few large bets on the favourite vs many small bets on the underground is typical of any major betting event.  And it's usually wise guys making the big bets vs joe public trying to get the most bang for their buck by taking the odds with the 'dog.  And if history prevails, joe public as usual will slowly but surely funnel their funds into the pockets of the wise guys... and REMAIN will prevail.  Let's see if the dynamics behind sporting events actually play out for political event.

DuneCreature's picture

Heavy, man. ... I believe you have called it.

Channeling in the ghost of J Morisson to boot.

~ DC v2.0



css1971's picture

A point I'll make us that a huge amount of our communication knowledge and information is electronic today. Switch off the computers and it vanishes.

Keep anything you think is important on paper. Acid free paper. If it's REALLY important then use archival or museum quality paper.