We’ve been following the Intrade markets for the coming election pretty closely, and each time it seems that John McCain’s odds of winning are lower than they were the previous time. So something feels amiss about a brewing story claiming that a single trader has been pushing John McCain’s “stock” heavily, possibly just to boost his numbers.
According to Congressional Quarterly, Intrade has been investigating this single trader, trying to find out why he or she has been dumping massive amounts of cash into the McCain contract and against Obama — at times pushing the price outside of normal market bounds. CQ quotes economist Justin Wolfers — who always shows up in these types of articles — saying: “Who knows who’s doing it, it’s obviously someone who wants good news for McCain.”
But if that’s true, it’s been an utterly spectacular failure. McCain is currently at $.16 on the market, basically at his all-time lows. And the decline has been relentless, with very few ticks upward. It’s also a testament to the efficiency of the market that we rarely see sudden, inexplicable swings.
It also seems possible that someone is just really bullish on McCain. Conventional wisdom is that he’ll lose, but check out the latest polling. This thing’s starting to get tighter.