Tradesports Weather Trading

TJIC mentioned that he made $250 betting that George W would win the election so I checked out the site. I’ve become fond of betting on the weather. It’s this nice mix of science, probability, and reading human reactions to the weather. And I’ve won some money.

Thinking of human reactions, I’m reminded of a chart I saw a long time ago about perceived dangers vs. actual dangers. There were tens of items on the chart but I can give you an example of typical reactions:

On a scale from 1 to 10, rank how afraid you are on a daily basis, of being killed by

  1. a traffic accident
  2. an airplane crash
  3. a nuclear power plant disaster

Most people put traffic accidents low on the list and put planes and nuclear disasters high on the list. But statistics show that you are FAR FAR FAR more likely to be killed in a traffic accident than the other two. It’s that incorrect response to stimuli that I’m playing on when I’m making my bets.

A while back I was looking at Tradesports for the first time and said to TJIC something like, “Why can’t people be dumb so I can steal their money?” Well, at the risk of huge humiliation and loss of all the money I’m betting, I’ll say that there are such people out there. And here I come.

1-26-05 update. Oh, who am I kidding. The weather market on tradesports is so small that I can’t ever make any real money at it. And the larger the market gets, the more that damn free market equalization thing will kick in.


  1. Actually, I wagered $250 and made $750.

    I used the funds to purchase two old wooden card catalogs, and have them shipped to my front door. They are now in my woodshop, where they hold screws, nails, and other odd tidbits.

    In honor of the position I went long in, they are named “Bush” and “Cheney” respectively.

    Disclaimer: I am not a Republican, although I am sometimes assumed to play one on the Net, by people who do not understand the difference between Republicans and Anarcho-capitalists.

  2. Lee says:

    No way!
    . . . Way!

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