Historical Political Futures Markets: An International Perspective

24 Pages Posted: 8 Oct 2008

See all articles by Paul W. Rhode

Paul W. Rhode

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Koleman S. Strumpf

Wake Forest University, Department of Economics

Date Written: October 2008

Abstract

Political future markets, in which investors bet on election outcomes, are often thought a recent invention. Such markets in fact have a long history in many Western countries. This paper traces the operation of political futures markets back to 16th Century Italy, 18th Century Britain, and 19th Century United States. In the United States, election betting was a common part of political campaigns in the antebellum period, but became increasingly concentrated in the organized futures markets in New York City over the postbellum period.

Suggested Citation

Rhode, Paul W. and Strumpf, Koleman S., Historical Political Futures Markets: An International Perspective (October 2008). NBER Working Paper No. w14377, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1278451

Paul W. Rhode (Contact Author)

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor ( email )

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Ann Arbor, MI 48109
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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Koleman S. Strumpf

Wake Forest University, Department of Economics ( email )

PO Box 7505
Winston-Salem, NC 27109
United States
336-758-5410 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://users.wfu.edu/strumpks

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