Crypto Predictions Site Polymarket Taking Bets on Whether Russia Will Use a Nuclear Weapon by 2023

Cryptocurrency predictions site Polymarket is accepting bets now on “Will Russia use a nuclear weapon before 2023?” following an escalation in tensions between Russia and Ukraine and increased calls by Russian authorities to utilize such weapons.

Polymarket is not able to be used by U.S.-based traders. Earlier this year, the site was fined $1.4 million and ordered to shut down by the CFTC for not registering with it. Polymarket eventually restarted operations but limited access to only non-U.S. users.

The current odds being offered on ‘Yes’ on the nuclear weapon question are about 17 to 1, meaning you’d win $17 for every $1 you bet. On the other hand, betting correctly on ‘No’ would win you $1.06 for every $1 you bet.

According to the bet’s page, a prediction market on Russia’s use of nuclear weapons “has been requested many times recently by esteemed academics and thought leaders from across the world, and it is strongly within the public's interest to have accurate price discovery and realtime forecasts on such a topic.”

Polymarket wrote that it considered the prediction market on this topic “a public good, in order to provide clarity to society on one of the most pressing issues of the 21st century.”

Polymarket detailed that “this market will resolve to ‘Yes’ if the Russian Federation detonates a nuclear device in an offensive capacity by December 31, 2022, 11:59:59 PM ET. Otherwise, this market will resolve to ‘No.’” It added that to meet the “Yes” criteria, the detonation of a nuclear device must be in an offensive capacity, must not be a test, and must either be claimed by the Russian Federation or widely accepted to be from the Russian Federation.