Re: Stealing an Election: What's it worth?

From: Jim March <jmarch_at_prodigy_dot_net>
Date: Tue May 31 2005 - 00:31:55 CDT

Ed Kennedy wrote:

> Hello Jim:
>
> I can't necessarily see a huge advantage there but I'm not a
> professional investor. The reason I kind of doubt this is that polls
> usually predict election results pretty accurately (setting aside
> Ohio) so this doesn't seem like most elections would have results
> different from what was polled previous to the election or even during
> the elections. via exit polls. Obviously if you knew the results were
> going to be radically different from what pre election polling and
> exit polls you might be able to have some edge. Otherwise, I can't
> see much or a systematic advantage to an investor.

Well that's precisely it, isn't it?

Make the results go a different way than predicted, bingo.

But even discounting that: stock markets are VERY volitile. They go
back and forth on "group whims". Take the fairly extreme (for defense
spending purposes) Reagan/Mondale race. Even though Reagan was expected
to win, when he did there was a "sigh of market relief" where defense
tech stocks were concerned.

It's all very emotional, not very rational.

If you KNOW for certain how things are going to go several hours early
and you have solid historical data backing up your predicted outcome, I
remain convinced you could make good coin even without actual tampering.

It's a bit like card-counting at Blackjack tables. A good counter can
shift the odds from 4% - 5% against 'em to 1% or 2% in their favor.
Which is enough to make serious money with and get you kicked out of
Vegas for life.

In other words, don't look at it as a "sure thing in progress", look at
it as a "subtle shift in odds"...an entirely different matter as far as
difficulty is concerned.

These odds are so carefully stacked that the SEC has to stomp HARD on
any possible whiff of insider trading that would make the odds useless.

Jim
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Received on Tue May 31 23:17:50 2005

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