Politics General Election By Graham Sharpe

We've Scot An Election Problem, Say Bookies

BOOKMAKERS William Hill have been forced to cut their odds about a government coalition involving the SNP, for the SIXTH time, as political punters pour pounds on that outcome - and it is now down to an 11/4 shot - the shortest odds for any of the options for what form the next elected government will take.

'When we were first asked to quote odds about a government coalition involving the SNP we offered 7/1, but that price is long gone and we've now shortened up through 13/2, 6/1, 5/1, 9/2, 4/1, 7/2 and are now down to 11/4 favourite' said Hll's spokesman Graham Sharpe.

However, there is still some serious support for other options, and a Wiltshire client of Hills has staked £2000 on the Conservatives ruling as a minority government, now in from 11/2 to 9/2.

'Most punters are pretty sure that there will be a Hung Parliament' added Sharpe - 'Including the man who collected £1,093,333 from us on the result of the Scottish Referendum - he has staked £200,000, the largest General Election bet ever placed, that no Party will win an overall majority, at odds of 2/9 - giving him a potential profit of £44,444.'

WILLIAM HILL PREDICT THAT FOR THE FIRST TIME THERE WILL BE AN EIGHT FIGURE SUM RIDING ON THE OUTCOME OF THE GENERAL ELECTION, 'We believe that for the first time there will be a £10million+ betting turnover on the General Election.'

With David Cameron standing firm on his demand for one tv election debate featuring seven Party leaders, William Hill believe that he is unlikely to take part at all, and offer 8/13 that he and Labour leader Ed Miliband will FAIL to take part together in a tv election debate - and 6/5 that they WILL do so.

William Hill are also offering odds of 3/1 that Mr Cameron will be 'empty-chaired' should the debate(s) go ahead without him, and 2/9 that he will not be.

WILLIAM HILL ODDS: GENERAL ELECTION OUTCOME...2/9 Hung Parliament; 11/4 Coalition involving SNP; 4/1 Con-LD Coalition; 9/2 Con minority govt; 9/2 Con majority; 5/1 Labour minority govt; 8/1 Coalition involving Ukip; 9/1 Lab-Lib Dem coalition; 12/1 Lab majority; 22/1 Coalition involving Greens; 33/1 Con-Lab coalition; 50/1 Ukip majority; 500/1 Lib Dem majority; 25/1 any other outcome.