Fourth term looks secure for Angela Merkel
Three days out from the German Federal Election, Betfair markets could barely be offering a clearer signal towards the result. Despite short-odds punters getting burnt in a series of big polls around the globe recently, they are queueing up to back Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU party at the minimum odds of 1.01 – equivalent to 99% chance – to win the Most Seats. Meanwhile Merkel is rated 98% likely to win a fourth term as Chancellor at odds of 1.02.
While those recent upsets should guard against complacency, there is literally no polling evidence to suggest one. The key difference with for example, the US and UK elections, is a proportional voting system that ensures smaller parties hold their own. As explained earlier this week, the big questions concern the nature of the Next Government.
Currently Germany has a ‘grand coalition’ between the two mainstream left and right parties and that remains the favourite, trading around 1.8 (56%). Were the centre-left to underperform, however, Merkel may look to her party’s historic partner the FDP and/or the Greens. A three-way ‘Jamaica’ coalition – named so after the party colours – is rated second likeliest, and was matched earlier today at 2.52 (40%).
However, the big international news story concerns a party that will not enter government, because the others refuse to deal with it. The far-Right AfD had slipped back from earlier peaks, in the wake of Merkel’s decision to invite nearly 1M refugees to stay, but current polls have them on course for a clear third place and significant representation in parliament.