The odds: What price Cable for chancellor?

By Sandamali Zbyszewski

Vince Cable, Liberal Democrat finance spokesman, has been hailed the likeliest candidate to replace Alistair Darling as chancellor by British punters.

Ladbrokes have slashed the odds on Mr Cable being Chancellor from 16/1 to 10/1.

Spokesman Nick Weinberger said: “This is quite surprising but we think it’s because the media are talking up the likelihood of a hung parliament.”

And bookies are reporting a surge in betting on the election outcome, now the flag has officially been dropped.

Graham Sharpe of William Hill, said: “Betting on the general election has increased by an amazing tenfold since the date of going to the polls was confirmed.

“It is as though punters have only just realised that there is going to be a general election.

“All of a sudden political bets are rivalling the Grand National and Tiger Woods’ comeback in the punting stakes.

“We are confident that a new record political betting turnover of £25million will be set on this general election”.

Paddy Power and Ladbrokes which also reported an increase in election betting following Gordon Brown’s announcement yesterday.

Darren Haines at Paddy Power said they were taking so few bets on a Labour overall majority that they were offering odds on how many seats Labour would win.

Odds

Paddy Power

8/15 Conservative Overall majority

11/1 Labour Overall Majority

200/1 Liberal Democrat Overall Majority

13/8 Hung Parliament

4/1 Labour to win 300-350 seats

Ladbrokes

8/15 Conservative Overall Majority

10/1 Labour Overall Majority

250/1 Liberal Democrat Overall Majority

15/8 No Overall Majority

William Hill

10/1 Vince Cable to be next chancellor

8/13 Conservative Overall Majority

8/1 Labour Overall Majority

300/1 Liberal Democrat Majority

6/4 Hung Parliament