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Sports betting odds are displayed on a tote board, Tuesday, June 5, 2018, inside the Race and Sports Book at Dover Downs Hotel and Casino in Dover, Del. The market for legal sports gambling in the United States widened significantly on Tuesday with the expansion of single-game sports bets in Delaware, less than a month after the U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for states to accept the bets. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

 

Up through this past weekend the offshore betting markets on the Presidential election had “stablized” with Biden as a slight favorite.

For several days the daily “money line” had sat unchanged at Biden -121 and Trump +100.

After events yesterday, the line moved in Trump’s direction, which mean the books took in more money on Trump than they did on Biden — enough more that they shifted the line.

Today the money line is Biden -115 and Trump -106.

That that means is that if you want to bet on Biden to win, you would need to wager $115 in order to win $100.

On Trump you would need to wager $106 in order to win $100.

One site I have used to track changes in the money line pointed to a couple factors in yesterday’s news cycle — the signing of the Abraham Accords between Israel and a few Arab countries in the Middle East, and Pres. Trump’s performance swatting away George Sephanopolous of ABC News during last night’s “Townhall” event broadcast on ABC.

But there were two other events also mentioned — the Big Ten football annoucement yesterday, and tomorrow night’s Biden Townhall on CNN.

With regard to the Big Ten, President Trump had personally lobbied the Big Ten Commissioner to reverse the earlier vote to cancel the season, and follow the lead of the SEC and a few other football conferences to play a shortened schedule starting in October.  President Trump then claimed some credit for the conference’s vote to play.

The betting site noted improvement in Trump’s odds in a couple of the Midwest states with prominent Big Ten football schools.  Trump was already favored in Ohio, but now he’s -240, which means Ohio is moving in the direction of becoming out of play for Biden according to bettors.  Similarly, although he remains an underdog in Pennsylvania, Trump is now only +120 there, which means bettors see Pennsylvania as a very tight race — basically a toss-up.  When Penn State is actually playing in late October and November, will that number shift even more?

The University of Michigan was thought to be the Big Ten school which had led the way to the first vote in the conference to cancel the fall football season.  Now that the decision has been reversed, will Trump’s chances of winning again in Michigan improve?

As for the upcoming CNN Townhall with Biden, keep in mind that “sharps” — professional gamblers who bet based on data and analytics, and not based on party preference or emotions — tend to get their money in ahead of events.  “Squares” — the general betting public — more typically reacts to events.  Bets by the “sharps” move the money line — not so much betting by the “squares.”

Once Trump survived the ABC Townhall which had all the earmarks of an ambush going in, the line moved — likely in anticipation of Biden’s coming performance in the CNN event, regardless of how much CNN attempts to help him.  Probably the biggest assist CNN can give to Biden is just in hosting the event since so few people watch CNN anymore.

So the speculation is that some “sharps” moved in with money on Trump at +100 in anticipation of the odds on Trump winning are likely to improve later this week — meaning the payoff for a Trump win will decline as he moves from underdog to favorite in the race.

Other individual state action mentioned by the site were improvements in Trump’s odds in Florida and Arizona — likely in response to favorable polling by Trump with Hispanic voters who have big impacts on elections in those two states.