The weekly YouGov poll for the Sunday Times is online here – topline figures are CON 33%, LAB 44%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 8% – all very much in line with the usual picture. I haven’t had chance to go through the ad hoc questions, this week covering the BBC and tax avoidance, but there are a couple of interesting findings in the regular trackers.

On the leader ratings David Cameron is on minus 17 (from minus 16 last week), Ed Miliband is on minus 21 (from minus 18 last week). It’s worth noting that both of them seem to have consolidated the increases they got from their party conferences. Prior to the Tory party conference David Cameron’s ratings were pretty consistently in the negative mid-twenties, since the conference they have been pretty steady in the negative mid-to-high teens. Ed Miliband’s ratings pre-conference were also in the negative mid-twenties and while they have declined from the immediate post-conference peak, they seem to be settling in the negative high-teens/low-twenties.

While there does appear to have been a real change in the party leader approval ratings, the same can’t be said for the economic trackers. We saw an increase in the percentage of people thinking their economic circumstances after the GDP figures came out last month and for a brief period the public were the most optimistic they’d been for two years. It has not lasted – the economic trackers are back to the sort of pessimism we saw before the GDP figures. Asked how they see the economy, 38% think things are still getting worse, 35% think things have stopped getting worse, but there is no sign of any recovery, 21% think there are signs of recovery, just 2% think that the economy is on the way to full recovery.


103 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 33, LAB 44, LD 9, UKIP 8”

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  1. Paul

    Think yourself lucky with the mature dating woman. She looks a lot more desirable than the gorilla I got.

  2. JOHN B DICK…………Have you got the mature lady astride the chair ? Ooooher !! :-)

  3. A “real change” in leadership ratings from absolutely dire to somewhat less dire.

    Of 2010 LD voters, Cameron is -33% : Milliband is -18% : Clegg is -50%.

    If they vote, then presumably they will vote for the least rubbish leader?

  4. @ andyo (previous thread)

    “@Statgeek

    What are your latest MAD figures please.”

    UK:
    Con 33.4
    Lab 43.1
    Lib 9.0
    UKIP 7.2
    Green 2.0
    Other 4.8

    London:
    Con 35.1
    Lab 43.8
    Lib 10.1
    UKIP 6.4
    Green 3.0
    Other 2.0

    RoS:
    Con 42.9
    Lab 33.6
    Lib 10.9
    UKIP 9.2
    Green 2.6
    Other 2.2

    Mid & Wal:
    Con 34.5
    Lab 44.7
    Lib 7.8
    UKIP 7.5
    Green 2.0
    Other 3.9

    North:
    Con 25.7
    Lab 53.9
    Lib 7.8
    UKIP 7.1
    Green 1.7
    Other 2.2

    Scotland:
    Con 20.4
    Lab 42.3
    Lib 6.7
    SNP 25.9
    UKIP 2.0
    Green 1.2
    Other 0.7

    Over 30 polls, mind.

  5. @STATGEEK

    From your figures,Labour improving in ROS…In the recent PCC elections,they did quite well in towns like Crawley,Hastings and Brighton which they lost in 2010.

    @AW
    Just wanted to let you know the electoral map still shows Corby as blue.

  6. @Statgeek,

    In case my previous comment gets modded out. Thanks for your figures, they are very interesting.

    :-)

  7. @AW

    Thanks for the updated UKPR polling average. :-)

  8. JBD:

    Its OK: I’m getting furniture now.

  9. I think the one I had before had watched Fatal Attraction too much.

  10. Contest for UMP leader much closer than expected… with accusations of voting irregularities. It would be something of an upset if the right-wing candidate Jean-François Copé (who wants to appeal more directly to FN supporters) defeats former PM François Fillon.

  11. I’m getting an advert to spend a holiday in Israel – described as “an amazing adventure”.

    Does that include getting to bomb Gaza?

  12. @OLDNAT

    No, but I hear the firework displays in Tel Aviv are impressive.

  13. STATGEEK

    Must be celebrating the start of the campaign for January’s elections.

  14. @OldNat@Statgeek

    Guys, I realise that your comments re Israel/Gaza were made in a lighthearted manner but really there is nothing lighthearted about this situation.

    If the Israeli advance is not prevented by the international governments (in other words the US) then I foresee the beginning of the total destruction of the Middle East including Israel.

    The US and the UK are blind if they don’t see the effect that this will have on the rest of us.

  15. PETER BELL

    There isn’t. Especially when you see this kind of stuff from the Israeli side

    http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Op-EdContributors/Article.aspx?ID=292466&R=R1&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

    and, the equivalent from Hamas.

    That the USA unreservedly supports Israel, instead of using their provision of weaponry to provide a moderating effect, has been “unfortunate” to say the least.

  16. @PB

    “Guys, I realise that your comments re Israel/Gaza were made in a lighthearted manner but really there is nothing lighthearted about this situation.”

    Appreciated, but our humour or lack of it will not change a thing in that region. Countless peace envoys and other ‘initiatives’ have not worked.

    A touch of mild banter won’t matter either, and frankly, as a Brit, I’m worrying more about our old folk as winter approaches.

  17. STATGEEK

    “as a Brit, I’m worrying more about our old folk as winter approaches.”

    I’ll be fine, thanks.

    I don’t think many “Brit” old folk are having their homes bombed out, or destroyed by hurricanes.

    On some things, it’s OK to be parochial but ……

  18. @Oldnat

    “I’ll be fine, thanks.”

    LoL!

    I meant that I tend to worry about the things I can change or help change. The Israeli thing is too far away, and I have no power or influence over it.

  19. STATGEEK

    is there a particular reason why you are going to be delivering food and blankets to the old folk in your community – rather than the young homeless?

    Even then, you could provide them for those struggling in other parts of the world.

    Other than personal charity, you have no more power or influence over matters here than in Gaza or Staten Island.

  20. Well if we’re on the subject….

    It seems that many conflicts around the world are between different religious groups – e.g. Militant Islam v the West, Israel v Gaza, US and UK and others v Afghanistan, the Balkans, Northern Ireland and so on.

    Do people think that this is because organized religion necessarily causes conflict, or is it just being used as an excuse? I favour the former explanation, but I would be interested in the views of others.

  21. Since I, err, posted this in the last thread by mistake (since this is the active thread) –
    Interesting bits from the latest ComRes –
    1408 respondents (weighted) for their headline VI question –
    Con 31, Lab 43, Lib 10, UKIP 8

    For only the 5-10 sure to vote (1538 respondents with DKs removed) –
    Con 29.4, Lab 42.2, Lib 10.2, UKIP 8.4

    But asked what they ‘generally consider themselves’ (1602 respondents with DKs removed, brackets compared to 5-10s sure)-
    Con 34.4 (+5), Lab 40.6 (-1.6), Lib 11.4 (+1.2), UKIP 3.9 (-4.5)

    Perhaps this would be a good indicator of a ‘protest vote’ and how many would ‘come home’?
    If this is a likely figure, the Lab back to Lib is relatively small and Lab’s support is pretty secure but UKIP support halves, returning it seems to the Cons.

  22. “PCC elections.. Brighton which they lost in 2010.”
    Apart from not reading too much in to the PCCs generally, you have to remember that they lost Brighton to the Greens in 2010 – so Ex-Libs have the choice between defecting to Lab or Green (this would actually be something interesting to poll).
    But in the PCCs, the Greens didn’t stand – so it’s not really comparable.

  23. @ Old Nat (from the previous thread)

    “Didn’t Rose Bird’s fellow justices agree with many of her decisions on death penalty judgements?

    Why was she the one to be pilloried?”

    Depends on the Justices. There were numerous 4-3 opinions and in some cases, 5-2 opinions. The Scottish Tory who replaced her as Chief Justice frequently dissented after he was appointed to the Court (and so did his predecessor). I think that of the 61 death penalty cases before her, she voted to reverse the penalty in all of them. In 5 cases, she was in dissent.

    She wasn’t the only one to be pilloried. Two of her colleagues were removed from the bench too along with her. She was probably the most pilloried because she was the Chief so the Court bore her, name (at least in the media) and because she was the only woman (and first woman) on the Court.

    Of the two other Justices in her 5-2 or 4-3 majorities, one wasn’t up for retention until 5 years later (and he retired and allowed a Republican to appoint his successor rather than face the voters). And the other is interesting because he was a major Liberal (he was also a legal giant and one of the greatest judicial minds of all time) but he did not get along with her. Plus, he wouldn’t have been so easy to defeat since he had waged political campaigns before and knew how to fight a campaign and had more credibility with voters. Finally, given his advanced age, right wingers and business interests decided it wasn’t worth the trouble of going after him, figuring he’d retire soon enough. Ironically, he would serve for another 15 years.

    In many ways, she kind of is like Che in that she’s sort of this compelling, dramatic, fascinating, inspirational, and yet altogether tragic figure. That said, I don’t think they’ll be making a movie about her life any time soon. Not enough violence (though plenty of actual death threats).

  24. SOCALLIBERAL

    Thanks for that.

  25. I believe in equality for everyone, except reporters and photographers. MAHATMA GANDHI

  26. @tingedfringe

    Cheers for those stats. Would seem to back up what we were saying on yesterdays thread about former lib dems sticking with labour and how labour should concentrate on keeping these new recruits – rather than chasing tory swing voters.
    Your breakdown of –

    Con 34.5
    Lab 40.6
    LibDem 11.4
    UKIP 3.9

    I have a felling that the result of the next GE will not be far off that.

  27. More problems potentially for the SNP with this morning’s IFS report on future Scottish finances. The report seems reasonable and honest, and suggests that initially the SNP claims of a better than rUK debt ratio and income are valid, if oil assets are distributed according to standard measures.

    However, the report then says that the likely decline in longer term revenues from oil and gas mean that the higher spending per head in Scotland would mean a bigger fiscal adjustment than in rUK.

    This has always been something of an issue for the SNP, with uncertainty regarding the long term future a cause of nervousness among many Scots. While there are arguments that can be made regarding refocusing the economy using oil revenues as a stop gap, which may be perfectly valid, in terms of public opinion, such notions are complex to communicate and involve a level of uncertainty that makes it difficult to sell.

    All future scenarios contain such uncertainties, but the difficulty with the proponents of change is that the uncertainties contained within their chosen path undergo more scrutiny and negative publicity than the status quo. Unfair this may be, but it’s a fact of life. This independent report is therefore a major issue for the SNP and they need to tackle it head on.

    John Swinney’s initial response appears to be poor (although it may be selective quoting). He lauds the IFS report as backing what the SNP have said all along about allocation of current oil resources, while not addressing the issue of ling term decline. I suspect that this approach won’t do much for SNP credibility.

  28. @TF, Reggie

    Thanks for that analysis. It does suggest that Con will get a good proportion of UKIP back, but that the ex-Libs may well stick with labour. :-)

  29. Still no clarity in the UMP leadership election. Copé declared himself victor, but Fillon said not so fast:

    L’élection interne à l’UMP pour désigner le nouveau président du parti vire à l’énorme sac de noeuds. Tandis que toute la soirée, l’écart est resté extrêmement serré entre les deux candidats à la succession de Nicolas Sarkozy, voilà que chacun s’accuse mutuellement de fraudes et revendique la victoire pour Copé, et, pour Fillon, une avance qui serait désormais déterminante. (Libération)

    [sac de noeuds = sack of knots/bag of bones/can of worms]

  30. ALEC

    Good report from the IFS.

    http://www.ifs.org.uk/bns/bn709thw(00)zzx.pdf

    I’m looking forward to the subsequent reports – especially the one on the application of an efficient tax system in Scotland – since the Treasury seems to have ruled that out for the UK.

  31. Alec,

    Given that the oil & gas aren’t due to run out for at least twenty years that gives us plenty of time to adjust. It has long been the SNP’s position that oil revenues should be invested rather than used to fund current expenditure.

    That of course will mean changes but then that is kind of the point. Independence is about having the power to set your own course to face the challenges ahead.

    If we thought the UK was the best structure and system of government for Scotland we wouldn’t to change it. I know it’s a bit toadyism to quote your leader but Alex Salmond said;

    ” Independence isn’t the answer to Scotland’s problems it is the chance to address them!”

    If the UK was up to the job then we wouldn’t be in a position of weakness relative to the rest of the UK.

    I say relative because what comes out clearly from the report is that the differences between Scotland and the UK even without oil aren’t that great.

    We were told five years ago that the three percent difference between the UK’s deficit and Scotland’s when it was about 40% would be crippling, but now it’s up at over 80% and the UK hasn’t imploded.

    If we are facing a fiscal squeeze in twenty years then Independence gives us twenty years to plan and adapt, if we have the power to do it and set out a clear way forward.

    In the last month or so I’ve read that Britain’s nuclear waste in Cumbria is now deemed dangerous, the prospects of any new nuclear power stations is at least a decade away and that we might start having power cuts by 2015.

    All these are things than we were warned against twenty years ago. You can say the same thing about the pension situation, the banking crisis, global warming and Heathrow.

    The choice is that having been warned that there is a challenge twenty years ahead do you choose to take the initiative or do you leave it in the hands of politicians who, for me anyway, have a track record of not planning for the challenges ahead.

    Peter.

  32. I think a few people in the business community are getting nervous about a possible referendum on the EU, and are now making their concerns and views heard.

    I understand that the CBI President, Sir Roger will make a speech at the CBI conference today in which he will say (or may have already said) according to a press release embargoed until 9.45 am:

    “Whilst looking for new partners, we must not forget old friends. Europe, however challenged, remains home for half our exports.
    “It’s like many relationships – can’t live with you, can’t live without you – but somehow the partnership survives.
    “Whatever the popular appeal may be of withdrawal, businessmen and politicians must keep a bridge firmly in place.
    “As countries of Europe bind together in pursuit of salvation – we in the UK must work harder to avoid the risks of isolation.
    “Europe is the bedrock of our international trade. It should be viewed as the launch-pad from which our global trade can expand – not the landmass from which we retreat.
    “And if we are to avoid an exit vote in any referendum – it is essential that the voice of British business is loud and clear – in extolling the virtues of future engagement – not as a reluctant participant – but as the lynchpin of our wider global trade ambitions.”

    What if any effect will this have on the public’s perception of the EU? Might it encourage some UKIPpers to return home to the Cons and Lab?

  33. Oops, “Sir Roger Carr”

  34. One factor that report doesn’t factor in, I’m guessing, is that the price of oil is likely to increase dramatically in the medium term. I would guess that although the production in volume terms goes down the value in dollar/gold terms will increase. But then I am expecting 200 dollar oil within 5 years

  35. Andyo

    I wouldn’t worry about labour winning the next election, I would worry about what happens when they do

  36. @Richard in Norway

    Does the Norwegian government believe that? Hard to square with the dramatic decreases in the cost of alternative energy.

  37. Richard,

    We can’t bank on a rising oil price, that’s why revenues should be invested not relied on. Initially most revenues would be used to fund what we inherit but over time we need to grow the wider economy and diversify the oil industry into a wider energy industry.

    Like all major challenges there are no easy answers but I’d rather face them head on than leave them with and just see what will happen. I see no signs from any UK party as to how to rebalance the Scottish economy so that it is as strong as the South of England by the time the oil runs out or any desire to make it happen.

    The “Better Together” response seems very much to be, stick with us and we will guarentee a perpetual subsidy so hat you can go on as before after the oil runs out.

    That for me seems to be not just short term, designed to get them a “No” in 2014 and nothing else, but almost defeatist. Is there line really”

    “Scotland under performs and the Union will allow you to underperformance forever”.

    Apart from anything else I doubt that such a line would be acceptable to most people south of the border.

    I don’t think that the gap between us is that big but I look to the future improving the Scottish economy but meeting challenges head on.

    Peter.

  38. TingedF:

    Good analysis: ties in with my own opinion that Cons are holding close to 2010, but unlikely to increase, LD to Lab mostly fixed in stone and Lab likely to remain a bit above 40.

    That excludes weird events and the possibiliy that, if these ARE the figures closer to 2015, the electorate will think “don’t want another coalition ta very much so if Labour look like being largest part let’s make sure they have an overall majority.”

    In other words there could be some sort of circular voting effect in Labour’s favour.

  39. @RiN — and in what way is that a non-partisan comment? ;-)

  40. ..Wolf

    No the norweigen govt plans for the future assuming a much lower price than today’s but they have always erred on the side of caution. As regards the decreasing price of alternative energy, there are some problems, one that it needs building out fast, which aint going to happen without finance(even if the banks were able to finance it and willing to take the risk, they probably wouldn’t because then they might take losses on loans to the oil industry) not only that but we would need to replace all the oil dependant transport cars and trucks which would mean retooling production or building new factories again finance would be the problem. Then there is the demand for petro chemicals and fertilizer, those alternatives haven’t been devoloped yet and again would require lots of time and finance. Then there is the problem of the inefficency or prehaps more accuratly the over efficency of the market. If a lot of transport companies went over to alternative energy. They would be saddled with a lot of debt which would be a fixed overhead, but them switching over would cause the price of oil to decline making their competitors that hadn’t switched more competitive, which would probably result in our alternative energy transport companies operating at a loss, unless they have very supportive banks they would go bust before the price of oil turned in their favour. It’s easy to see that any change must be gradual unless supported by govt, none of which can afford to support such a change even if they were ideologically happy with interfering in the market. Of course the oil company’s will do their very best to continue selling their product as long as possible, after all they have large investments and are making large profits, they will use their political influence to slow down the uptake of alternative energy sources and might even but up electric car company’s in order to close them down, this happen in the US with public transport in the early 20th century, the oil companies and car makers bought up public transport and destroyed it, making the petrol driven car an essential good. That’s just a few of the problems, there are more, so I feel quite confident in predicting ever increasing oil prices but of course there will be ups and downs

  41. Andyo

    You misunderstand me, if they Tories were in opposition now I would say the same to them. The next parliament will have even more problems than this one, no matter who is in power

  42. PETER CAIRNS

    @”“Scotland under performs and the Union will allow you to underperformance forever”.
    Apart from anything else I doubt that such a line would be acceptable to most people south of the border.”

    I don’t think that is their line & if it was , I think your second statement would be true-though don’t Polls in England suggest that Scottish Independence would be popular in any event?

    I had the impression that more devolved powers was DC’s stance . The obvious one is substantial fiscal autonomy ( insofar as that is practical within a UK setting)-which would presumably relieve rUK of the effects of any Scottish “underperformance”-real or perceived.

    I would now prefer you to leave the UK , for three reasons-If that’s what you want you should go. It would stop the endless carping & anti-English rhetoric. It would make a Conservative majority in rUK more likely.

    I can’t help feeling though that your countrymen will declare that Independence isn’t what you want. If this is the case , total ( or as near to that as possible) fiscal autonomy would appear to be the answer to the wishes of most Scots-and of the English too.

  43. I am expecting Labours lead to increase this week, as Cameron is threatening to remove planning rules, so people can’t stop major infrastructure projects from going ahead. This will not be very popular in many parts of the country.

  44. @Rin — I did misunderstand. You are right, the road out of this world-wide depression will be long and hard.

  45. Peter cairns

    I would have thought that the SNP should point out that if Scots don’t vote for independence the English will cut off extra payments as soon as the oil runs out. I would have also thought that on the question of Europe the SNP would have said that the choice of whether Scotland is part of Europe is not their own as long as Scotland is part of the UK if the English vote to leave the EU then the Scots won’t have enough votes to prevent it and vice versa

  46. Don’t often get to read the Telegraph, but looked at today’s Business section in the Dentist’s this morning

    An interesting piece on the shock coming the way of Germany in it’s share of potential ( ?probable) write downs of Greek loans from the EU.

    Big enough numbers to be a significant item in the German Budget.

  47. If Cameron is threatening to rip up planning reforms again,I wonder whether they think there is a serious risk of a triple -dip and an attempt to boost construction.

  48. ANDYO………….Careful, there isn’t a world-wide depression. :-)

  49. Ken

    Not yet, but there aren’t many places that are not already in recession or sliding into it and we have to question just how long the Chinese can continue with their massive infrastructure investment and ghost towns

  50. Has there ever been a tripple dip before?

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