BBC HOMEPAGE | NEWS | WORLD SERVICE | SPORT | MY BBC low graphics | help
news vote 2001search vote 2001
 You are in: Vote2001
VOTE2001 
Main Issues 
Features 
Crucial Seats 
Key People 
Parties 
Results &  Constituencies 
Opinion Polls 
Online 1000 
Virtual Vote 
Talking Point 
Forum 
AudioVideo 
Programmes 
Voting System 
Local Elections 
Nations 

N Ireland 
Scotland 
Wales 

BBC News

BBC Sport

BBC Weather

 A/V REPORTS
The BBC's Jon Sopel
"Ladbrokes are already paying out dividends to customers who have put their money on a Labour win"
 real 56k

Monday, 4 June, 2001, 11:57 GMT 12:57 UK
Bookie pays up on Labour win
Ladbrokes staged a one horse race at Westminster
Ladbrokes say the odds are stacked against the Tories
Betting firm Ladbrokes is already paying out on a Labour win this Thursday.

The books closed on Labour winning most seats on Monday with the odds having fallen from 1/40 to 1/50.

But other bookmakers are still taking bets on Labour being the largest party.

Ladbrokes betting expert Sean Boyce said: "Nobody wants to bet on the Tories and no one wants to bet on the Lib Dems."

He said the decision was based on bets placed, opinion polls and media analysis.

Severe losses

"Of course, if Hague does cause an upset we'll end up paying out twice," he said, acknowledging that the losses would be severe.

Betting slip
The book on a Labour win has closed

Conservative leader William Hague refrained from commenting on the early payout, at his party's news conference on Monday.

But he reiterated that he was confident his party could win.

The company will be paying out tens of thousands of pounds in winnings.

But he the smart punters placed their bets early, with one punter standing to win 3,000 after betting 24,000 at 1/8 months ago.

Mr Boyce said: "We hope that by doing this we will get money back in circulation and people will put bets on other things like the size of a Labour majority.

Bookmakers William Hill is offering punters odds of 1/100 on Labour being the largest party, 16/1 on the Tories winning the most seats and 300/1 on the Liberal Democrats.

But its odds on Labour winning an overall majority are better at 1/50.

A William Hill spokeswoman said: "The election has been good for us, with about a 10m turnover being generated by it."

The biggest bet so far on Labour to be the largest party was 30,000 at 1/20 placed in May.

Stanley's Racing is offering 1/40 on Labour being the biggest party, with the Tories on 10/1 and the Liberal Democrats at 300/1.

But the chance of a large Labour majority could be influenced by the England football team's result in Greece on Wednesday where they play their World Cup qualifier, a political analyst has warned.

A drop in the feel-good factor that comes with a defeat for the national side could cost Labour seats, according to Lincoln Allison, senior lecturer in politics at Warwick University.

"Sport and politics are inextricably linked, and soccer is the most popular game, so it has the most impact," he said.

 A/V CONSOLE
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS

Latest stories

Voting system

TALKING POINT

INTERACT
PARTY WEB LINKS



The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


Related stories:

03 Jun 01 |  Vote2001
Fight apathy, Sundays urge
31 May 01 |  Vote2001
Lib Dems odds narrow
20 May 01 |  Vote2001
Betting, boxing and ballots
25 May 01 |  Vote2001
Hague: Leader or landlord
©BBC