Science comes to the rescue of the leading academics suffering lapses of memory -those who, on Monday, signed on to be on the board of the Prediction Market Industry Association, which is supposed to lobby for the legalization of InTrades real-money prediction markets in the United States of America

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John Delaney (CEO of InTrade) – (InTrade PDF file – CFTC PDF file):

Nearly all leading academics, not known for their attraction to unanimity, have publicly supported event markets. A great majority of these academics have been supplied with Intrade market data in the past, a service that Intrade intends to continue, for all study leads to an increase in transparency and understanding of event markets. It seems that the leading event market academics make no distinction between the benefits derived from academic owned markets like Iowa Electronic Markets and commercial market platforms like Intrade.

Yet many academics, with some notable exceptions, do temper their policy prescription to suggest a “safe harbor” for academic sites where research might be more generally available. As noted above Intrade has gladly supplied its event market data, typically free of charge to most of the leading prediction market academics and their students, and we are committed to encouraging the future study of event markets by continuing to supply our event market data free of charge or at very deep discounts. The academics that study event markets do a great service in developing our understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of event markets. Some commentators suggest that market liquidity and breadth typically benefit all event market stakeholders. Thus far commercial platforms like Intrade seem to be providing the greatest depth and breadth in event markets.

As Intrade has been a staunch supporter of event market academic study, and supplies greater depth and liquidity in its event markets than any other platform, it seems strange not to be a preferred purveyor. Perhaps the predominant reason many academics have held back from advocating and treating all event markets alike is a sense that initiatives to clarify or unwind the legislation restraining the optimal development of event markets is unlikely to be achievable. It seems many academics and commentators suggest a slow bureaucratic and pragmatic caution rather than focus on the optimal result. While the optimal result may be more challenging to achieve, for consistency, for better price discovery for the benefit of all, as well as for the development of Intrade, we encourage CFTC to apply common goals, objectives and standards for all participants.

Prediction Market Industry Association – (PMIA)

4) Lobby for a clear legal and regulatory environment conducive to the productive adoption of prediction markets by individuals, firms, and governments, and ensuring free access to these markets by traders.

The PMIA’s first board is comprised of:

Robin Hanson (George Mason University)
Justin Wolfers (Wharton School – University of Pennsylvania)

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