by Anton Johan
Popular UK bookies such as William Hill and Paddy Power averted a catastrophic outcome for the industry after it became clear that there would be no Liberal Democratic majority government, following last week's general elections.
Election betting broke records this time around, in the closest referendum in an entire generation.
It is believed that UK punters spent £25 million enjoying a political flutter.
"Political betting has entered the mainstream," noted Graham Sharpe of William Hill. "It used to be just for political anoraks, geeks and shrewdies, but the debates put it in the reality TV realm."
The betting markets certainly shifted considerably in the weeks leading up to the elections. Odds for a Nick Clegg victory, for example, shortened from 350-1 to under 20-1.
Had Clegg won, bookies estimate that they could have lost literally tens of millions of pounds.
"It was the biggest punt in the history of political betting," said Sharpe.
Ladbrokes also saw political betting at an all-time high, with a 400% increase in the number of bets placed on the day of the general elections, compared to the 2005 elections.
What makes the scenario even better for bookies is that there is a good prospect of a second election happening later this year.
In the meantime, the industry lost around £5 million due to a hung parliament result.
Odds are 1-3 that David Cameron will become the next Prime Minister of the UK.