Berg Comments On Latest IEM Data

The money says Democrats will take over the U.S. House and Republicans wil keep the Senate in November. The projection isn't from a political poll but the current prediction by the Iowa Electronic Markets. The system allows traders from around the world to buy futures online based on possible political outcomes. The Iowa Electronics Markets started at the University of Iowa in 1988 allowing futures trades on the presidential race. The enterprise expanded to include other political races including the balance of power in midterm elections. Now the system is gauging the possible spread of flu outbreaks. Organizers of the effort say the markets have a 76 percent accuracy rate. JOYCE BERG is one of four University of Iowa faculty who run the electronic markets. She says organizers are watching another political issue: this month's passage by Congress of a bill banning online gambling. Those running prediction market sites, like the Iowa Electronic Markets, are worried they'll be lumped in with other gambling sites when it comes time to enforce the ban. Futuretense is a program produced by American Public Radio for broadcast on public radio stations.