IEM Offers California Recall Market

A columnist writes that Iowa has its presidential caucuses in January, "but if you are inclined to take risks before then, there's the IOWA ELECTRONICS MARKET, the University of Iowa business college's 'real-money futures markets in which contract payoffs depend on economic and political events such as elections.' Just now the hot market is California's recall election. The IEM opened for recall trading on Aug. 27 in two markets: one on the recall itself and the second on a possible new governor. It's a benign, business-school spin on the now-defunct Pentagon online futures market for betting on Middle Eastern developments that was advertised as a vehicle for profiting on assassinations and other terrorist acts. Unlike Iowa's program, the Pentagon's was not promoted as a possible part of a college curriculum."