A federal election was held on Saturday, 21 August 2010 for members of the 43rd Parliament of Australia. The incumbent centre-left Australian Labor Party led by Prime Minister Julia Gillard defeated the opposition centre-right Liberal/National Coalition led by Opposition Leader Tony Abbott.
Labor formed a minority government with the support of an Australian Greens MP and three independent MPs.
Labor and the Coalition each won 72 seats in the 150-seat House of Representatives, four short of the requirement for majority government, resulting in the first hung parliament since the 1940 election.
Six crossbenchers hold the balance of power. Greens MP Adam Bandt and independent MPs Andrew Wilkie, Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor declared their support for Labor on confidence and supply.
Independent MP Bob Katter and National Party of Western Australia MP Tony Crook declared their support for the Coalition on confidence and supply.
The resulting 76–74 margin allowed Labor to form a minority government. The Prime Minister, government ministers and parliamentary secretaries were sworn in on 14 September 2010 by the Governor-General Quentin Bryce.
During the state of political limbo punters had somewhat of a roller-coaster ride on the post-election betting markets. This chart is an overview look at the state of betting play.
As the graph shows it was a turbulent time.
On the 3rd of September Sportsbet was offering a payout of $1.68 for a $1 bet on a Coalition government compared to $2.10 for a $1 bet on Labor. At 3.40pm Andrew Wilkie’s held a press conference in which he said that he would support Ms Gillard. The remarks sparked a mini-avalanche of bets on Labor.
By 4pm, Sportsbet’s odds had turned almost upside-down, to $1.70 for Labor and $2.10 for the Coalition. By 6pm, a bet on a Labor win was paying only $1.33 while the Coalition’s odds had lengthened to $3.10. The shift in sentiment was so sharp that another betting agency, Centrebet, suspended its election market for several hours.
The next day, Betting agency Centrebet has suspended betting on the federal election, with north Queensland independent MP Bob Katter expected to announce on Sunday which party he will support to form the next government.
Centrebet spokesman Neil Evans said Labor was at $1.51 and the coalition $2.50 when betting was suspended on Saturday afternoon. The odds aren’t too different to those Centrebet was offering on election eve, August 20, which were $1.52 for Labor and $2.44 for the coalition.
How did you go choosing the winner of this election? Did the right party win?