Tuesday, July 06, 2004

VP Choice Market Manipulation?

So is this the biggest blunder in recent journalistic history, on par with the famour Dewey headline?

Or is it something more interesting? Some may not be aware that millions, yes, millions of dollars were riding on the internet futures markets concerning Kerry's choice of VP. In June, Wired magazine reported that as much as two million were wagered just on Edwards on the Tradesports exchange alone. There are many such futures trading markets on the net.

But with Edwards being the prohibitive favorite, trading up to 70 out of a possible 100 dollars per share, there wasn't much real action to be had on the markets.

The Post 'Exclusive' changed all that. Suddenly on markets like Tradesports, Gep and Edwards swapped market positions.

Edwards on 7/6/04:

Gep on 7/6/04:

Gep's futures shot up, only collapsing upon Kerry's official announcement, and Edwards collapsed, only recovering upon Kerry's word. So, as a result of the Posts' 'mistake', a canny trader with advance knowledge of the Post's spurious headline could multiply his money many times over, to the tune of several million dollars, by dumping his Gep futures, acquired over the past several weeks or days at bargain price, after the Post hit the wires and just before Kerry's official announcement. The profits could be quite considerable, especially if playing all the net exchanges at once. Of course, the SEC doesn't monitor these exchanges, and in the case of overseas exchanges, tax forms might not even be required.

I can't say that there is fire here; the beauty is that perhaps no could ever prove it. But that smoke sure smells like money to me. Don't forget that it the Post is owned by Murdoch, the same outfit that brought us the spurious Fox election call for Bush. Certainly, Murdoch doesn't need such a paltry sum, but maybe someone working in a key position at the Post does.


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