If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(Marginal Revolution)   For about $1,250 it is evidently possible to manipulate InTrade   (marginalrevolution.com) divider line 45
    More: Interesting, independent expenditures, Monobloc engine, underweight, prediction markets, Fe C, swing states, day trading, election days  
•       •       •

2046 clicks; posted to Politics » on 24 Oct 2012 at 10:11 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



45 Comments   (+0 »)
   
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

Archived thread
 
2012-10-24 02:23:38 AM  
More Farkers should know about this site. 538 gets a lot of attention (justifiably), but the Princeton Election Consortium has an even more impressive track record. For example:

"In 2004, on Election Eve, the median was Bush 286 EV, Kerry 252 EV - the exact outcome. In 2008, we predicted Obama 364 EV, McCain 174 EV - just 1 EV off from the final outcome of Obama 365 EV."

Right now, they predict an Obama win, 290 EV to 248.
 
2012-10-24 02:25:18 AM  
Also, the bit about InTrade is at the bottom of the linked article. They add "This morning's swing toward Romney was caused by one trader's manipulation."

I think someone somewhere else posted that somebody bet like $17k on Romney, and InTrade's numbers moved like 15 or 20 points.
 
2012-10-24 02:30:29 AM  

shower_in_my_socks: Right now, they predict an Obama win, 290 EV to 248.


The only poll that matters is the one in early November.

/already voted
 
2012-10-24 03:00:17 AM  
theoccultsection.com
 
2012-10-24 07:56:00 AM  
I thought I saw similar numbers from the Iowa market's close - after all, Iowa limits you to $500, so you can do less manipulating. So I looked again, and this time, I didn't just look at the closing prices, but the average and high. If you look, the average price has been roughly within about $0.10-$0.20 of the high and low prices. But yesterday, the high price was $0.47 higher than the average. "Yabut, a precipitous change will probably have a larger impact," one might say. For comparison, after the huge sell-off of Obama shares and purchasing of Romney after the first debate, the largest single-day difference was $0.30.

What does this tell us? Unfortunately, Iowa doesn't give us enough information to draw any conclusions. It could be the Iowa (and Intrade) markets actually captured knowledge, like they're trying to do, and people close to the campaigns have reason to believe Romney has a good chance of winning. Or, it could be that someone (or someones) decided that they were tired of seeing Romney so far behind and decided to drop a couple of grand on changing it. (After all, even though Iowa limits you to $500, you could always pay for other people to open accounts.) If that is what happened, it would actually be a bombshell success for the markets, proving that they can do what they set out to do: capture information.

In the end, the "bonus Intrade takedown" is actually an affirmation of Intrade: their transparency is such that we, as outside observers, can see what's going on and that is to be commended, not "taken down".
 
2012-10-24 07:59:06 AM  
Whoops: decimals are off by one. It should be that the differences are typically $0.01-$0.02 with a $0.047 difference yesterday. I should really drink caffeine before farking.
 
2012-10-24 09:43:56 AM  

Ricardo Klement: What does this tell us?


It tells us that futures markets are piss poor prediction tools because the are easily manipulated. It also says something about the ethics of Romney supporters in that they would be willing to participate in this manipulation.
 
2012-10-24 10:14:55 AM  
They aren't predictive so much as reflective of the current conventional wisdom, which since 2008 means they are reflective of things like the 538 forecast
 
2012-10-24 10:18:49 AM  
Princeton?! That bastion of loony libs? Thanks, but no thanks. If I'm going to accept any college polling it's going to be from a REAL university like Liberty, Oral Roberts, Bob Jones, or Texas A&M.
 
2012-10-24 10:19:26 AM  

NowhereMon: It tells us that futures markets are piss poor prediction tools because the are easily manipulated. It also says something about the ethics of Romney supporters in that they would be willing to participate in this manipulation.


Won't this ultimately make the people betting on Obama a shiat-ton of money though? Or, at the very least, make the "pot odds" of throwing in a bet for Obama be more worthwhile? Eventually it'll hit the natural non-manipulated equilibrium, right?
 
2012-10-24 10:20:20 AM  

shower_in_my_socks: More Farkers should know about this site. 538 gets a lot of attention (justifiably), but the Princeton Election Consortium has an even more impressive track record. For example:

"In 2004, on Election Eve, the median was Bush 286 EV, Kerry 252 EV - the exact outcome. In 2008, we predicted Obama 364 EV, McCain 174 EV - just 1 EV off from the final outcome of Obama 365 EV."

Right now, they predict an Obama win, 290 EV to 248.


I have been following Princeton from time to time. They seem to bring a great deal of academic (non-partisan) rigor to their methodology.

The bolded part of your post has made my day.
 
2012-10-24 10:21:05 AM  

Mercutio74: NowhereMon: It tells us that futures markets are piss poor prediction tools because the are easily manipulated. It also says something about the ethics of Romney supporters in that they would be willing to participate in this manipulation.

Won't this ultimately make the people betting on Obama a shiat-ton of money though? Or, at the very least, make the "pot odds" of throwing in a bet for Obama be more worthwhile? Eventually it'll hit the natural non-manipulated equilibrium, right?


A fool and his money are soon parted.
 
2012-10-24 10:22:43 AM  
www.parisbusinessreview.net

But who is the Paris Business Review* calling the race for?

*O'Reilly fabricated an entire newspaper, so he could cite a source that agreed with him.
 
2012-10-24 10:23:25 AM  

shower_in_my_socks: Also, the bit about InTrade is at the bottom of the linked article. They add "This morning's swing toward Romney was caused by one trader's manipulation."

I think someone somewhere else posted that somebody bet like $17k on Romney, and InTrade's numbers moved like 15 or 20 points.


The bigger question is what idiot would waste $17,000 of his or her own money to improve Mitt Romney's numbers on InTrade?
 
2012-10-24 10:23:58 AM  

shower_in_my_socks: Also, the bit about InTrade is at the bottom of the linked article. They add "This morning's swing toward Romney was caused by one trader's manipulation."

I think someone somewhere else posted that somebody bet like $17k on Romney, and InTrade's numbers moved like 15 or 20 points.


For about 10 minutes. Right after it happened, folks took advantage of the depressed price of Obama shares and got a free lunch out of the deal. As market manipulations go, this wasn't a very good one.
 
2012-10-24 10:25:40 AM  

themindiswatching: shower_in_my_socks: Right now, they predict an Obama win, 290 EV to 248.

The only poll that matters is the one in early November.


Exactly. We put too much into polls. But then again, we put too much into the Presidential election altogether, probably because it's the only national office everyone votes on.
 
2012-10-24 10:26:09 AM  

skykid: shower_in_my_socks: Also, the bit about InTrade is at the bottom of the linked article. They add "This morning's swing toward Romney was caused by one trader's manipulation."

I think someone somewhere else posted that somebody bet like $17k on Romney, and InTrade's numbers moved like 15 or 20 points.

The bigger question is what idiot would waste $17,000 of his or her own money to improve Mitt Romney's numbers on InTrade?


I believe the (really lame brained) goal was to start a perceived Romney "wave" that other investors would jump on. Instead, they just got Obama shares for less than market, and drove the price right back to where it was.
 
2012-10-24 10:28:04 AM  

skykid: shower_in_my_socks: Also, the bit about InTrade is at the bottom of the linked article. They add "This morning's swing toward Romney was caused by one trader's manipulation."

I think someone somewhere else posted that somebody bet like $17k on Romney, and InTrade's numbers moved like 15 or 20 points.

The bigger question is what idiot would waste $17,000 of his or her own money to improve Mitt Romney's numbers on InTrade?


When you manipulate inTrade you manipulate public perception of Romney's chances. What if you could move the numbers closer to Romney 280? Consider how much a drop in the bucket 17000 is to the millions being used on campaign ads. Now what if you could then use those numbers to back up your case?

Of course the market should jump in to correct it but with a small enough pool, you never know.
 
2012-10-24 10:30:32 AM  

NowhereMon: Ricardo Klement: What does this tell us?

It tells us that futures markets are piss poor prediction tools because the are easily manipulated. It also says something about the ethics of Romney supporters in that they would be willing to participate in this manipulation.


Eh, I disagree. There's something to be said about the psychology of voting- people like to be on the winning side, and are less likely to vote if they feel a candidate has no chance of winning.

Now, if we accept that there is a certain percentage of the voting public that looks at Intrade, and we further accept that said percentage is more likely to be politically savvy- or, at a minimum, more involved- then it becomes a very rational economic decision- spending $1,800 on Intrade in order to change the perception of a politically savvy group of voters will most likely produce a higher ROI (in terms of votes gained per dollar spent) than a maximum donation to a candidate's campaign that will mainly go towards media broadcasts.
 
2012-10-24 10:31:17 AM  

bdub77: When you manipulate inTrade you manipulate public perception of Romney's chances. What if you could move the numbers closer to Romney 280? Consider how much a drop in the bucket 17000 is to the millions being used on campaign ads. Now what if you could then use those numbers to back up your case?

Of course the market should jump in to correct it but with a small enough pool, you never know.


It depends on whether you could get information on how Romney's likely to do in the election. If someone pushes his inTrade numbers to 280, smart investors would realize that the market doesn't match reality and will likely bet heavily on Obama because their return will likely be better.

If inTrade was the only source of election news, you would be right though.
 
2012-10-24 10:33:15 AM  

Paul Baumer: shower_in_my_socks: Also, the bit about InTrade is at the bottom of the linked article. They add "This morning's swing toward Romney was caused by one trader's manipulation."

I think someone somewhere else posted that somebody bet like $17k on Romney, and InTrade's numbers moved like 15 or 20 points.

For about 10 minutes. Right after it happened, folks took advantage of the depressed price of Obama shares and got a free lunch out of the deal. As market manipulations go, this wasn't a very good one.


You have to admit though, it's pretty humorous that someone wasted their money trying to generate a false 'wave', although given who most of Romney's donors are, I'm a little disappointed that it was only $17,000. C'mon Sheldon, you've already thrown $34 million at PACs, step up your InTrade game.
 
2012-10-24 10:40:14 AM  

NowhereMon: Ricardo Klement: What does this tell us?

It tells us that futures markets are piss poor prediction tools because the are easily manipulated. It also says something about the ethics of Romney supporters in that they would be willing to participate in this manipulation.


Ethics? In trading? If you're serious, at this time I would request to amend my previous estimates for laugh output to reflect an increased laugh input relative to previous estimates (report furnished by B. B. Rodriguez & Co., 2012 Q4 statement, p42).

As this is a market based on political popularity, I would say it only exists to "manipulate" in the same way a campaign ad or presser about polls would.
 
2012-10-24 10:43:51 AM  
Sounds like somebody thinks Trump is gonna drop a bomb today. A fool and his money.....
 
2012-10-24 10:44:17 AM  

Mercutio74: bdub77: When you manipulate inTrade you manipulate public perception of Romney's chances. What if you could move the numbers closer to Romney 280? Consider how much a drop in the bucket 17000 is to the millions being used on campaign ads. Now what if you could then use those numbers to back up your case?

Of course the market should jump in to correct it but with a small enough pool, you never know.

It depends on whether you could get information on how Romney's likely to do in the election. If someone pushes his inTrade numbers to 280, smart investors would realize that the market doesn't match reality and will likely bet heavily on Obama because their return will likely be better.

If inTrade was the only source of election news, you would be right though.


Maybe you'd only need it to be 280 for a short time. A Romney speech, or for a Romney aide to say, "Well his InTrade numbers had him at 280 today, so I'm pretty sure this race is a dead heat."
 
2012-10-24 10:45:30 AM  

bdub77: Maybe you'd only need it to be 280 for a short time. A Romney speech, or for a Romney aide to say, "Well his InTrade numbers had him at 280 today, so I'm pretty sure this race is a dead heat."


It seems unlikely that would have a measurable effect on national and statewide polling.
 
2012-10-24 10:48:39 AM  
The free market worked and this is bad news for Romney

/seriously
 
2012-10-24 10:51:07 AM  
Really? It's "manipulation" when some moron decides to donate a bunch of money into a zero-sum derivative market?
 
2012-10-24 11:03:30 AM  

YoungSwedishBlonde: Really? It's "manipulation" when some moron decides to donate a bunch of money into a zero-sum derivative market?


I'd say that it's manipulation if the moron's intention was to mess with the market. If the moron legitimately thinks that Romney's got good enough chance he or she's willing to bet on it... then it's just moroninity.
 
2012-10-24 11:03:54 AM  

bdub77: skykid: shower_in_my_socks: Also, the bit about InTrade is at the bottom of the linked article. They add "This morning's swing toward Romney was caused by one trader's manipulation."

I think someone somewhere else posted that somebody bet like $17k on Romney, and InTrade's numbers moved like 15 or 20 points.

The bigger question is what idiot would waste $17,000 of his or her own money to improve Mitt Romney's numbers on InTrade?

When you manipulate inTrade you manipulate public perception of Romney's chances. What if you could move the numbers closer to Romney 280? Consider how much a drop in the bucket 17000 is to the millions being used on campaign ads. Now what if you could then use those numbers to back up your case?


I dare suggest that anyone who hasn't actually made up their mind will say "Intrade? What the hell is that?" and tune out people trying to use it to back up their case. Even uninformed voters have heard of "Gallup," but only perhaps a million Americans even know what Intrade is.

Sure, you'd get traction with Republicans by saying it on Fox News, but you'd get traction with Republicans on Fox News by saying that Sylvia Browne has seen the future and predicted a Romney win.
 
2012-10-24 11:05:32 AM  
What a surprise - money can buy an election
 
2012-10-24 11:06:44 AM  

Mercutio74: YoungSwedishBlonde: Really? It's "manipulation" when some moron decides to donate a bunch of money into a zero-sum derivative market?

I'd say that it's manipulation if the moron's intention was to mess with the market. If the moron legitimately thinks that Romney's got good enough chance he or she's willing to bet on it... then it's just moroninity.


I am not very familiar with InTrade but as far as I know it operates like a derivatives market. it's really no different than manipulating a financial market in that case
 
2012-10-24 11:07:34 AM  

Publikwerks: What a surprise - money can buy an election


you read a different article?
 
2012-10-24 11:07:38 AM  

Tenga: Sounds like somebody thinks Trump is gonna drop a bomb today. A fool and his money.....


What dropping a bomb may look like.
 
2012-10-24 11:13:08 AM  

Mercutio74: YoungSwedishBlonde: Really? It's "manipulation" when some moron decides to donate a bunch of money into a zero-sum derivative market?

I'd say that it's manipulation if the moron's intention was to mess with the market. If the moron legitimately thinks that Romney's got good enough chance he or she's willing to bet on it... then it's just moroninity.


If you legitimately thought Romney had a chance and wanted to bet on it, you'd buy the shares piecemeal to avoid driving up the price.
 
2012-10-24 11:18:36 AM  

skullkrusher: Publikwerks: What a surprise - money can buy an election

you read a different article?


No, but the parallels to the general election is interesting. Just like intrade can be manipulated, so can America. All it takes is alot of money.
 
2012-10-24 11:18:47 AM  
Probably been said already.

If the polling numbers and prediction models are too heavily in favor of an Obama win it can negatively impact Republican base turnout i.e. it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. If, however, $17K at Intrade can provide Fox News with the "Intrade, the market based election predictor, has the election in a dead heat" talking point it can be used to energize the base since they only need to push just a little harder to get a win. All you need to do is skew Intrade and then emphasize it in your messaging to the base.

I'm confident of an Obama win but with the Republican attempts at changing the rules of the game in order to secure a win I'm still a little on edge. The one thing that has ensured the relatively peaceful transition of power between administrations is public confidence in a fair election system. As that confidence is undermined we're more likely to see election results considered to be illegitimate by a significant fraction of the population and that is not a good state for a representative government to be in.
 
2012-10-24 11:25:30 AM  
Blue Horseshoe loves Romney...
 
2012-10-24 11:37:36 AM  
I don't know if Intrade allows naked short selling, because if there was a fixed number of shares, couldn't someone who wanted the publicity just corner the market on Romney, and only offer to sell at 98% or 99%?
 
2012-10-24 11:47:39 AM  
A lot of people are misunderstanding this issue.

The investor only overpaid in the case of a win. If Romney loses, he still makes a profit on it all. He was probably hoping to create a wave and short it on the peak.

I've watched people try and drive down Romney's price through flooding progressively lower prices.
 
2012-10-24 11:48:21 AM  

NowhereMon: Ricardo Klement: What does this tell us?

It tells us that futures markets are piss poor prediction tools because the are easily manipulated. It also says something about the ethics of Romney supporters in that they would be willing to participate in this manipulation.


I'd disagree with your first point. While our mystery man was able to manipulate the market in favor of Romney, he was only able to do so for less time than it takes to cook a pizza. The market quickly slipped back down to normal.

As for your second, well, a fool and his money...
 
2012-10-24 11:52:13 AM  
Why, I'm particularly fond of the Men Seeking Falafel ads in the back of the magazine, next to the Men Seeking Morons. I'm so glad it's not written in a foreign language.

www.parisbusinessreview.net
 
2012-10-24 12:00:12 PM  

Monkeyhouse Zendo: If, however, $17K at Intrade can provide Fox News with the "Intrade, the market based election predictor, has the election in a dead heat" talking point it can be used to energize the base since they only need to push just a little harder to get a win.



That is my thought as well. Compared to the 100's of millions being spent in this campaign, $17k to buy a new talking point is pretty cheap. And that talking point just happens to fit with the completely bullshiat narrative that Romney has "momentum" despite the polls being flat for 2 weeks now.
 
2012-10-24 12:08:35 PM  
For about $1,250 it is evidently possible to manipulate InTrade

So . . . slightly more than the price of a Congressman.
 
2012-10-24 12:14:57 PM  

mrshowrules: Right now, they predict an Obama win, 290 EV to 248.

The bolded part of your post has made my day.



Sam Wang, who runs the site, also uses the phrase "the cake is largely baked" a few times in recent articles. Meaning, with only 2-weeks left to go, this thing is pretty much locked-in where it is. You either believe the polls or you don't, but they aren't going to move much again.

I would add that if the polls DID move a lot with only a couple of weeks left, without there being a "dead hooker"-level scandal to explain it, then those polls are absolutely worthless.
 
2012-10-24 12:55:32 PM  

shower_in_my_socks: mrshowrules: Right now, they predict an Obama win, 290 EV to 248.

The bolded part of your post has made my day.


Sam Wang, who runs the site, also uses the phrase "the cake is largely baked" a few times in recent articles. Meaning, with only 2-weeks left to go, this thing is pretty much locked-in where it is. You either believe the polls or you don't, but they aren't going to move much again.

I would add that if the polls DID move a lot with only a couple of weeks left, without there being a "dead hooker"-level scandal to explain it, then those polls are absolutely worthless.


I like the ring of that also. I still hope Obama doesn't let up plus we get one more set of jobs number which I hope are solid.
 
Displayed 45 of 45 comments

View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »
On Twitter





In Other Media


  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report