UK bookmakers offer odds on hung ParliamentSaturday, April 18, 2015
LONDON, England (AFP) — British bookmakers were yesterday offering their shortest-ever odds on a hung Parliament in next month's general election, with David Cameron's survival as prime minister too close to call.
Cameron's Conservatives are the clear favourites to win more seats than any other party in the May 7 vote, but betting firms predict that will not be enough to keep him in office.
Indeed, bookmakers reckon a minority government of the current main Opposition Labour Party, led by Ed Miliband, is the most likely outcome.
Betting chain William Hill now have a hung Parliament at odds of 1/8, meaning they reckon there's an eight in nine chance that it will happen.
Bookmakers have Cameron's centre-right Tories as odds-on to win the most seats, meaning it is considered more likely to happen than not. Ladbrokes have them at 1/2 and centre-left Labour at 13/8.
However, when it comes to forming a government, they reckon a Labour minority administration -- backed up by smaller, left-wing parties -- is the most likely election outcome.
If no single party wins a majority, it is not necessarily the party with the most seats which gets to form the next Government.
Labour could win fewer seats than the Tories and still take power if it can secure the backing of other, smaller parties to boost its numbers and create a parliamentary majority.
"The main market people are betting on is for the most seats and most votes. At the moment the Tories are odds-on in both of those," Ladbrokes spokeswoman Jessica Bridge told AFP.
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