As several of these electronic markets are based offshore, many or even most of those betting are likely to be foreigners. However, they will also include U.S. citizens living abroad as well as others who are able to find ways to get bets placed overseas.
If the prices overseas differed enormously from those available at, say, bookmakers in Las Vegas and Atlantic City, you would expect arbitrageurs to close the gaps. So far, the prices in overseas markets are not noticeably different from those in the electronic market in Iowa.
In numbers? Across the markets, "shares" in Hillary Clinton have rocketed above 50 cents in the last few weeks, meaning the market is, astonishingly, giving her a better than 50% chance of winning the nomination.
Meanwhile Sen. Barack Obama, who was level with Senator Clinton at around 42% as recently as April, has faded remarkably to about 3%.No one else is really in it. John Edwards is finding little support right now even at just 5%. The rest? Meh. Hillary's lead in the betting is so strong that in some markets she's already being given a 35% chance of winning the final run-off for the White House itself. Don't believe any boos you hear from Rush Limbaugh or Fox News. That outcome would be just wonderful for business. Can you imagine?