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Berg Comments on IEM Trader Blip

Even gamblers on the presidential election can be hammered by late trading. Last Thursday, a person or persons unknown placed a bet with the online IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS suggesting that Democrat John Kerry would win a 70 percent share of the vote "market" against President Bush. Iowa sponsors futures trading related to political events, including presidential elections. The market has a good record for predictions. The Kerry spike, recorded on the University of Iowa Business School's Web site, apparently indicated a trade near midnight last Thursday, said JOYCE BERG, an accounting professor at the school and a director of the Iowa Electronic Markets. "I don't know what was in the trader's mind," she said. The spike did not last long. "By 2 a.m. [Friday], prices were back to 48," indicating the nearly 50-50 race currently under way, Berg said.

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