PredictWise Blog

Once again, we're taking a break from politics to discuss the most pressing upcoming contest in America: March Madness. Kentucky heads into the Sweet Sixteen in the same place it was a week ago, the overwhelming favorite to win the championship at a 29.9 percent likelihood of victory. Mitt Romney is slightly more likely to win the Presidency than Kentucky is to win the NCAA crown, but let's be fair: Kentucky has four rounds left, while Romney only has two.

Click Here for the Full Text on Yahoo!'s The Signal

Mitt Romney is poised to capture an easy victory tonight in the Illinois primary. The prediction markets currently give the former governor a 97.4 percent chance of winning the state, with Rick Santorum trailing at just 3.2 percent. We've seen Santorum overcome long odds before, but not at this steep of a disadvantage going into the day.

The following chart shows the progression of our forecasts, compared with the poll-based forecast that the New York Times' Nate Silver publishes on the FiveThirtyEight blog:

Click Here for the Full Text on Yahoo!'s The Signal

Kentucky is the top ranked NCAA basketball team in the country and the clear favorite to win the tournament at 26.7 percent odds. Those are tremendous odds, given that the team has to win six straight games against the best teams in the country (if you county an opening round game against 16-seed Western Kentucky).

The presence of Kentucky makes the South region the most dangerous for other top ranked teams: No. 2 Duke, No. 3 Baylor, and No. 4 Indiana all have the lowest likelihood of winning the title compared with the other teams of similar rankings.

The East is the most wide-open region due to the ineligibility of top ranked Syracuse's start center, Fab Melo. Second ranked Ohio State is 12.1 percent likely to win the tournament, the highest odds for a team not in the top seed. Fifth ranked Vanderbilt is the most likely seed outside the top 4 to escape their region.

Click Here for the Full Text on Yahoo!'s The Signal

2011-12 NCAA Championship - Likelihood to Win

After a Super Tuesday night that was more protracted than it was surprising, Tuesday contests in Alabama and Mississippi look like they'll be two of the more exciting primaries of the season. Our predictions, based on the political prediction markets, give a slight edge to Newt Gingrich in both states: 64.4 percent likely to win in Alabama and 55.7 percent likely to win in Mississippi.

Gingrich's only two victories so far have been in neighboring Georgia and South Carolina; a double win tonight would put him firmly on the path to sweeping the five states traditionally considered the heart of the Deep South. Our forecasts have Gingrich with a razor-thin lead in Louisiana, the fifth state in this regiona lead that will surely widen if he does well tonight.

Click Here for the Full Text on Yahoo!'s The Signal

The chart shows the progression of the likelihood of victory in Ohio since the morning after the last round of primaries. This is a great example of the value of prediction markets. The markets were able to adjust quickly, in real-time, to new information. They are also able to incorporate more information, like Romney's upward momentum in Ohio and his superior organization:

Click Here for the Full Text on Yahoo!'s The Signal