Bookies are turning into weathermen.
On Monday, bookies opened rates for the amount of rainfall the city will get in the next four months. Besides total rainfall, rates have opened for individual months from June to September.
And they expect to do business of between Rs 2,500 crore and Rs 3,000 crore.
The bets will come in from India, Pakistan, Dubai and other Gulf countries.
The recent general elections saw betting to the tune of Rs 13,000 crore while the Indian Premier League got business of Rs 20,000 crore, said a Mumbai-based bookie.
Bookies expect Mumbai to receive its first showers on June 7 or 8. They predict the city will get a total of 1,800 to 2,000 mm of rainfall this year.
As per the rates, a total seasonal rainfall of 1,700 mm in Mumbai would give a punter 90 paise for a rupee placed on bet. So, if the punter wins, he gets back his rupee along with an additional 90 paise.
For 1,800 mm rainfall the return will be Rs 1.35 for a rupee. (see box for rain quantity benchmarks vis-à-vis earnings per rupee)
Similarly, bookies have opened rates for rainfall for individual months between June and September.
Bookies have also predicted a 26/7-like situation this year, though on a lower scale. “The city is likely to witness heavy rainfall on July 24,” a Mumbai bookie said quoting the prediction by his group.
To get as close to accuracy as they can, bookies are studying humidity levels and referring the ‘scientific’ derivations with astrologers.