Trump Impeachment Odds Spike After Donald Trump Jr.’s Russia Emails
While some are accusing Trump Jr. of collusion, others are getting out their wallets: PaddyPower, an Ireland-based betting site, has seen more users placing bets on President Trump being impeached before the end of his first term, bringing the site’s total odds of the President being shuffled out of the White House by 2021 up to 60%—the highest it’s ever been, according to company spokesperson Lee Price.
“[President Donald Trump] had gone quiet over the last month, and we were starting to wonder if he might have ridden out the initial controversies – but he’s back with a bang today,” Price wrote in an email to Fortune Wednesday.
Not only are PaddyPower bettors increasingly putting their money on Trump being impeached before his first term is over, but they are also betting on him being impeached as soon as this year, bringing those odds up to 33.3%. That’s despite the fact that impeachment proceedings are usually lengthy.
“Everyone is betting on the ‘yes’ side of impeachment,” Price said, saying hundreds of thousands of pounds had been placed on that bet.
In fact, there is so little money on Trump staying on board for the full term of his presidency that PaddyPower would pay out just 37 pounds, or $47.68, to the winners.
So how much could these betting on impeachment stand to win if their bet works out? A user who made a $1 bet today would be in for a profit of 67 cents. If that user made a bet that Trump’s impeachment would be inevitable back when he was inaugurated in January, they would pick up about $10 for every $1 invested.
That might not seem like a huge opportunity lost, but lets continue scaling the bets up. A user who bet $1,000 today would make a profit of $670 if Trump were to be impeached. That would be $10,000 if they had made the bet around the inauguration.
Now let’s say the bettor decided to go all-out, putting the value of a Ford Focus Sedan into the pool Wednesday: If Trump were to be impeached, they would be eligible for a windfall of about $6,700. But if they had made the call inauguration day, their payout would $100,000.
If the investor decided to place a bet as high as $100,000 today, that would result in a potential profit of $67,000—or enough to buy a Tesla Model S. Meanwhile, placing that same bet at Trump’s inauguration would result in a profit of $1 million.
That said, PaddyPower is hardly a foolproof predictor. Another betting website called Predict-It sees just a 9% chance of Trump being impeached this year, down from the 30% chance it saw after then-FBI Director James Comey was fired in May.
So the euphoria of a potential windfall may be short lived for those PaddyPower bettors, most of whom are unlikely to be Americans.
Although, it’s not just betting sites weighing Trump’s odds of impeachment since news of Trump Jr.’s Russia meeting.
“We believe the risk of impeachment proceedings is now higher than before,” Citi’s Tina Fordham wrote in a note on Wednesday, though she added that impeachment is still unlikely. “It would be highly unusual and indeed likely politically costly to the party’s electoral prospects to pursue impeachment proceedings against a president of their own party, particularly with Midterm elections a little over a year away.”
Meanwhile, California Democrat Rep. Brad Sherman placed a different kind of bet when he filed an article of impeachment against President Trump Wednesday.