Odds of 2017 general election cut as Article 50 date announced
May to trigger Brexit notification on March 29
The price of a general election in 2017 has been cut from 5-2 to 2-1 by bet365 after prime minister Theresa May announced that she will notify the European Union on March 29 that the UK intends to leave.
Bookmakers had been betting on when Article 50, the official notification of intent to leave the union, would be invoked since the EU referendum last June, when the Leave campaign upset the odds by winning 51.89 per cent of the vote.
In November it had been an 11-10 chance with Hills that Article 50 would be triggered by the named target date of March 31 and 4-6 that it would take longer, but by last month it was 1-6 with the same firm that it would happen before April.
Now the question is when the official departure will happen and Hills have cut the price for the UK to leave the EU during 2019 from 4-11 to 2-7. They quote 7-2 that Brexit happens before 2019, and 7-1 that it happens after 2019.
Talk of a snap general election as early as May 4 was sweeping Westminster on Monday and Ladbrokes cut a 2017 national poll from 9-4 to 2-1, although Betfred offer a top-price 11-4.
The Conservatives are 2-7 with Sky Bet to get most seats in the next election, and the increased likelihood of it taking place sooner than expected has also caused bet365 to cut the price of a Conservative majority government to 1-2 from 4-7 with Labour trailing by a huge margin in opinion polls.
Ladbrokes offer 4-1 that the Liberal Democrats get more votes than Labour at the next election and the same price that Ukip outpoll the Red Rose party.