As the global betting industry evolves, ever more diverse markets are coming on stream, involving subject matters worlds apart from the racetrack, roulette wheel or football stadium. To some, politics is a matter of life or death. To others, its a golden opportunity to make money from predicting elections, leadership contests or even which currency a country will use.
Advocates will tell you this kind of real-world betting is easier to win at than sports, because the luck element is almost entirely removed. Even the media are getting in on the act, with highbrow newspapers presenting betting odds as an alternative to opinion polls, based on a remarkable recent record.
In this guest piece for www.casino.org, I run through some historical highlights of this fast growing market