While very fluid, we can track the latest results of the electronic prediction markets and polling data.
PredictIt currently has a 65% chance for a Biden victory. This is up from a week ago at 62.9% and also higher than four weeks ago.
As usual one has to be aware of just how little capital needs to be deployed to manipulate the illiquid PredictIt market.
A Trump victory has a roughly 41% probability according to this data, which is up slightly from 37.1% a week ago.
The national polls – compiled by Real Clear Politics – suggest a similar tilt in the race with Biden having a 51.3%-43.5% lead against Trump.
So according to these first analyses, Biden currently leads in all the battleground, or “toss up” states except for Ohio, Arizona and Texas. This would give him a comfortable Electoral College (EC) victory of 346-192…
But the popularity of Biden seems to decrease in new RCP’s average polls of Top Battleground states (FL, PA, MI, WI, NC, AZ), falling down to +3.1 and with Arizona just flipping to Trump in the past 24 hours.
2016 showed that poll results are imperfect.
Now, if we apply the polling miss from 2016 as Bank of America did last week, Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Iowa and and Maine would flip. For this exercise we have used the latest RCP polling average data as of Oct 31:
- Arizona: Trump +0.6
- Florida: Biden +1.2
- Michigan: Biden +6.5
- North Carolina: Biden +1.2
- Pennsylvania: Biden +3.7
- Wisconsin: Biden +6.4
- Georgia: Biden +0.8
- Iowa: Biden +1.2
- Maine 2: Biden +2.7
- Minnesota: Biden +4.7
- Nebraska-2: Biden +7.8
- Nevada: Biden +4.0
- Ohio: Tie
- Texas: Trump +2.3
These numbers were then adjusted by applying the same error rates as were observed during the 2016 polling, and the results are shown in the table below:
Recount, delays, contested outcomes
The margin of victory would be within 0.5 percentage points in Wisconsin (for Biden) and Georgia (for Trump), which would trigger an automatic recount and delay results.
In addition, the margin in Pennsylvania and Florida would be less than 1.0%, likely resulting in a bitter post-election night fight and contested outcomes.
Putting this together, Bloomberg said it best: “All of that means a Trump win on Tuesday would represent a historically staggering failure by public opinion polls, eclipsing even the 2016 miss. While the president’s chances of being re-elected aren’t zero, pollsters say it’s a long shot.“
In short, no matter what happens on Nov 3, expect recounts and extensive delays before we have a clear winner.