Harvard Shuts Down its Nobel Prize Pool

Last week we posted about Harvard’s Nobel Prize Pool, where people could place bets predicting this year’s winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics for $1 per entry. The Harvard economics faculty ran the site for a few years, dubbing it, “the world’s most accurate prediction market.” Apparently, Harvard wasn’t too keen on the idea, as the following notice now appears on the site:

Unfortunately, we have been advised by Harvard University to immediately shut down the Nobel pool due to legal reasons, and we have decided to comply with this request. We will fully reimburse the money of all participants, and we apologize for any inconvenience this creates for you. All participants will be contacted by email.

For anyone who watched the site closely over the last week, do you remember the odds for the actual winners, Thomas J. Sargent and Christopher A. Sims?




I think that I will frame my 1$ Harvard endorsed refund cheque.


I'd really like to know what the legal reasons are.


I think the person with the best odds was Bob Dylan.

But that might have been the odds of winning an Ignobel Prize; I'm often confused....

Alexander S.

Maybe it makes sence if you take up the Harvard’s Nobel Pool's initiative and become croupiers in this game in the following year and so forth?


According to some prelim results, Sargent was at 1.7% and Sims was at 1.4%

joe c

Some odds for previous years:

Robert Barro - 10.3%
Martin Weitzman - 5.5%
Paul Romer - 4.9%
Jean Tirole - 4.9%
Peter Diamond - 4.2%
Robert Shiller - 4.2%
Alberto Alesina - 3.6%
Lars Peter Hansen - 3.6%
Paul Milgrom - 3.6%
Richard Thaler - 3.6%
Robert Barro -10%
•John Taylor - 8%
•Paul Milgrom - 8%
•Jean Tirole - 6%
•Oliver Williamson - 6%
•Martin Weitzman - 6%
•Eugene Fama - 5%
•Richard Thaler - 5%
•Lars Hansen - 4%
•Paul Romer - 4%
•Hansen - 14%
•Barro - 13%
•Fama - 8%
•P. Diamond - 6%
•Hart - 5%
•Sargent - 5%
•Feldstein - 3%
•Sims - 3%
•Thaler - 3%
•Bhagawati - 2%


This is something my old colleagues at Iowa should take up in addition to their political stock market. Really interesting prediction tool.