There is lots of talk about the usefulness of polls versus prediction markets in working out who might win the next election. Well, the news today is that Therese Rein (Kevin Rudd’s wife) is placing a big bet on Labor’s victory in the upcoming election. She will sell her self-built multi-million dollar business that entrepreneurially developed alongside changes in government policy. The reason is obvious: should her husband become Prime Minister it would represent a major conflict of interest to be managing a company that relies on government contracts. Indeed, it is the definition of a conflict of interest.
Rein could have waited to see if Labor won or not but has chosen to sell out now. The pressures of the micro-scrutiny of the last week brought it to a head. But she may sacrifice millions in making this decision that is clearly a different one from one based on pure commercial considerations. So it is a bet of confidence in the likelihood of a Labor victory and these days it is probably a safe bet. It will be interesting to see how the betting markets react to this news.