Barack Obama may be leading Hillary Clinton in Iowa on the eve of the state’s caucuses, but no matter who wins, Clinton will be the Democratic presidential nominee, according to the Iowa Electronic Markets.
The IEM is a futures trading market set up as an experiment by the University of Iowa's College of Business.
The markets allow individuals, often university faculty and graduate students, to place their bets on shares that represent various Republican and Democratic candidates. It is open to anyone around the world who pays a $5 fee to set up an account and includes about 7,000 traders, InformationWeek explains.
As participants buy and sell stock in the candidates, the exchange offers them the opportunity to make or lose small amounts of money. The goal for the traders is to back the right candidate for his or her party's nomination, and earn money on the investment.
As of midnight Tuesday, shares on Clinton were worth 63.3 cents, while shares of Obama were worth 24.4 cents and John Edwards’ shares were worth 12 cents.
Trading has been going on since March 2.
Among Republican candidates, the IEM showed Mitt Romney’s shares worth 29.6 cents, followed by Rudy Giuliani at 23.3 cents, John McCain at 23 cents, Mike Huckabee at 15 cents, and Fred Thompson at 3.6 cents.
The IEM correctly called close presidential races in 1996, 2000, and 2004.
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