Here’s a prediction you can lock down, mostly because the courts say so: The PredictIt political prediction market can continue operating – at least for the time being.
On Thursday, the beleaguered prediction market was given what amounts to a stay of execution when the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued an injunction while it continues to ponder the future of the operation. Previously, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) had ordered the New Zealand-based operation to shut down by Feb. 15.
The next hurdle for PredictIt will present itself quickly, as the court has scheduled an oral argument for Feb. 8 in New Orleans, according to a press release from Aristotle International, the company that is the contract service provider for PredictIt.
After the CFTC withdrew PredictIt’s no-action letter in August — which gave PredictIt the legal cover to offer what amounts to exchange betting on political futures — a group of PredictIt traders, academics (PredictIt has ties to Victoria University of Wellington), and Aristotle took the CFTC to court, saying the shutdown violates the Administrative Procedure Act.
Oh my god, the CFTC just killed PredictIt after 8 years of precedent. This is unbelievable.https://t.co/mMpb0gaThj
— William Eden (@WilliamAEden) August 5, 2022
Next court date soon
Thursday’s ruling will allow PredictIt users to continue using the market while the Fifth Circuit mulls its decision. It’s expected that the court will issue an opinion shortly after the Feb. 8 arguments.
“This ruling will assist a thorough judicial review of the CFTC’s abrupt closure. We look forward to the opportunity to appear before the Court on February 8 and present our arguments that the CFTC’s closure order violated the APA and needs to be reversed,” David Mason, Aristotle’s general counsel and a former Federal Election Commission chairman, said in the release.