When just over half of the country voted in favour of Brexit in June, little did either the Leave voters or the Remain voters realise just how much uncertainty was in store for the country. Since the vote, we’ve been passed from PM to PM, and heard numerous arguments from all sides about whether Brexit will or will not happen, with some parties claiming that it simply constitutionally can’t. While nobody seems to know just what’s going to happen, it’s interesting to take a look at how the odds of when and whether Brexit will take place have changed over the past few months.
After the vote went through, many optimistic Leave campaigners imagined that Article 50 would be triggered straight away. Of course, this didn’t happen, and we’re still seeing uncertainty as to when it will be triggered. In early October, Theresa May promised to trigger Article 50 by the end of March 2017; this has recently been thrown into question once again as a recent High Court ruling that Article 50 cannot be triggered by the current government without the bill being passed through parliament first.
A movement as controversial and complicated as the triggering of Article 50 will no doubt, one would think, take time and resources to be pushed through parliament, if that’s what it comes down to. This will likely push the date of Brexit forward by quite a bit, and some hopeful Remain voters are no doubt thinking there’s a possibility that Brexit may not even happen at all. To further confuse matters, May has faced calls to hold an early General Election in Spring of 2017 in response to the ruling, which has turned her biggest promise yet as Prime Minister on its head.
It’s no surprise that the bookies and betting exchanges aren’t sure what to make of this uncertainty. Currently, most seem to think it’s very unlikely that Article 50 will be triggered in 2016, with Ladbrokes offering odds of 50/1 that this will happen, and Betfair 66/1. If you think that May will follow through with her promise to trigger Article 50 by the end of March 2017, then you’re best off placing a bet with Sky Bet, who will give you £5 back for every £2 you stake if you’re right.
If you’re feeling Brexit sceptic, you might want to place a bet with Sky Bet that it will happen in 2018 or later or not at all. Odds on this are currently 7/4, and if Article 50 isn’t triggered in the next six months they’ll likely only get worse, so now would be the time to place that bet.
Taking a look through the odds, it’s clear that most bookies seem to think that Article 50 isn’t going to be triggered any time soon – but there’s a decent chance of it happening at some point in 2017. In some ways, politics can be a lot more unpredictable than sports, and Brexit is looking to be one of those situations where nobody – including the PM herself – knows when Article 50 is going to be triggered, or even if it will be at all.