Budget polling

The budget is fairly unusual as an event that people actually pay attention to, and which actually has the potential to change voting intention polls. I spend most of my time hear stressing that the ins and outs of Westminster politics, the speeches, the gaffes, the policy launches. Hardly and of it is noticed by normal people who change their vote. Budgets are one of the exceptions – an annual event that does sometimes change minds. Regular readers will recognise the chart below from its outings at previous budgets – it shows the two YouGov polls before and after each recent budget (in recent years, its the weekly averages for the two weeks before and after each budget).

Effect of past budgets on government lead in YouGov polling

As you can see, while there is often talk of Chancellors revealing great vote winning bribes in budgets, when they do have an effect it is more often a negative one. Budgets can have a positive effect (2003, 2006 and 2011 all look like they shifted things marginally in the government’s favour), generally speaking the only big budget effects are negative ones – in 2008 and 2009 Alistair Darling had to deliver news of just how bad the economy was, while the 2012 budget contained the pasty tax, the granny tax and the 45p tax rate.

Anyway, while we’ll have the usual YouGov voting intention overnight, remember that the overwhelming majority of that will have been conducted before the budget was given. The actual figures we need to look out for will be those published Thurs/Fri night, and those published in the Sunday papers once the ups and downs of the budget have had time to register with the public.


278 Responses to “Budget polling”

1 4 5 6
  1. @RC

    There could be an argument that the Coalition needed to do more to get us out of trouble – i.e cut harder at the start.

    What you can’t say is that there was nothing we could have done 3 years ago that would have given us a better outcome today and over the next five years. That we will never know – what we do know is Austerity (As defined by GO) doesn’t work.

  2. @GRHINPORTS

    Sorry I was busy last evening. In response to your question I would switch to UKIP when they come a close second in the area i vote.

  3. reggieside

    The poor are also being priced out of travel, with fuel, privatising roads and road pricing threatened, railway and coach travel ludicrous etc etc

    The “flexible” work force is looking more and more like slavery every day.

  4. @NICKP

    Yes I am looking forward to the Daily Mail headline about the Bankers five children all with 600K houses subsidised by the state.

  5. @Charles

    Sorry i was busy last night. In response to your question I was referring to the old Soviet style socialism described by NickP in his earlier post.
    As for China they seem to have embraced Capitalism so not typical. I dislike the Scandinavian Model and think it will eventually fail as will all high tax high public spending models.

  6. RC

    From the 2010 election onwards, William Keegan in his regular feature in the Observer was predicting that George Osborne’s policies would have exactly the results we now have.

    And at the time of the election Alastair Darling’s policies had returned the UK to growth – a situation George Osborne managed to reverse with astonishing speed.

    So not exactly wisdom after the event from the left. But unlike William K and Alistair D, too many of them lacked the courage to express that wisdom in the face of being labelled “deficit deniers” by the right wing press. That soundbite by George Osborne may have done as much damage as his policies.

  7. @RC

    “It seems that we made the wrong decision in 2010 regarding Austerity ”
    No we didn’t “make the wrong choice”. No one in 2010 expected net exports to be in trouble due to the Eurozone crisis, which is also hanging over business confidence like a black cloud. No one expected high oil and food prices. No one expected the savings ratio to be as high as it is, sucking demand out of the economy.”

    ———————–

    Eh? Heard it all now. Commodity prices were a problem for Brown!! Do you not remember oil prices shooting up after the crash? Speculators fled to commodities after banking screwed up.

    The slowdown in the Eurozone? Not expected? Well it was for those cynical about austerity policies. But Labour had a situation after the banking crisis in which many of our trading partners were thrown rapidly into full-blown recessions after the banks crunched.

    We still got back to more than 2% growth inside two years though.

  8. And people saving and not spending is a classic response to austerity policies. Business won’t invest because no demand…

  9. And another week of disaster in local elections for the Tories
    http://www.englishelections.org.uk/england/lby/
    Adeyfield West – 43% Tory in 2011, 21% tonight, Tories 3rd behind Lib Dems and Labour

    -They are an odd bunch in Adeyfield West!

    I can’t say I am surprised by the huge fall in Tory support Must say I am surprised to see such a considerable switch from Labour to Lib Dem.

  10. had a quick look at the newspaper headlines today – the tory press seem to be pretty upset with the Budget.

    @devonian

    don’t think there’s any difference between Darling’s and Osborne’s policies, if anything Darling cut more than Osborne has.Truth is since 2010 the West has been losing competitiveness to China as can be seen in the US manufacturing growth figures which were +15% year on year in early 2010 and have been declining since.

  11. Wolf

    If Darling was cutting more than Osborne intended to do, what was the justification for Osborne fooling the electorate by labelling Labour “deficit deniers” and claiming only Conservative austerity could save us?

  12. @Wolf

    The coalition have made loads of cuts. Hundreds of thousands of public sector workers lost their jobs, school buildings programme halved, housing benefit cuts, child benefit cuts, tax credits cut. .. services slashed and councils suffering 20% cuts to their budget.

    It’s just that the cuts didn’t reduce borrowing much because theg reduced demand. So tax receipts fell as a consequence, welfare costs rose again.

    That’s the problem with the cuts. Knock-on costs that mean you don’t save much in practice.

    It’s true Darling would have made cuts too. But in conjunction with a targeted stimulus so you get growth alongside and increase your income helping to bring down the borrowing.

  13. @ Devonian

    “And at the time of the election Alastair Darling’s policies had returned the UK to growth – a situation George Osborne managed to reverse with astonishing speed.”

    A total non argument. “Growth” was only achieved by pumping up the economy with a massive extra 3% of GDP of government deficit in the space of one year.

    That is a one trick pony of a policy. With a deficit reaching 11.4% by the time they left office, it could not have carried on a moment longer – 14% plus of GDP would have tipped us over the edge.

    What was unexpected was how long both high oil and commodity prices plus the Eurozone crisis continued. No one, but no one expected either to continue for year after year.

    @ Carfrew

    As for blaming high savings on “austerity”, that is ridiculous. Households are aware they built up £1.5 trillion of debt in the run up to 2008 and are now paying that back. The fact their spending power has been poleaxed by high energy, petrol and food prices was never forecast by anyone and is making this task even harder.

    I think that most voters realise Britain was in a bigger mess than anyone realised in 2010 and that Labour wouldn’t have done any better. The polling supports this. e.g. Ipsos/MORI showed 69% thought Balls and Miliband would do a worse job or the same.

    The question is, when it comes to 2015 whether people will be willing to risk a change of government despite this realisation. What the Coalition needs are at least clear signs that at least the direction of travel is right i.e. deficit coming down further, economy showing consistent, even if slow, growth.

  14. @NickP

    I certainly don’t want Tesco to contro the World. What i do want is more individual freedom. Freedom to spend more of my own money rather than to hand it over to the state, freedom to employ who i want and freedom of expression. All these freedoms have been reduced by governments of both major parties.

  15. toh

    How has your freedom of expression been curtailed by the Government? Come to that, what’s to stop you employing whoever you want?

  16. The first poll conducted in its entirety after the Budget (You Gov: C 32 L 41 LD 11 UKIP 10 App -35) suggests that it has had little to zero effect on any of the party’s VIs or Government approval. Maybe we should reserve judgement until we’ve seen the weekend polls, but I’d be surprised if what Osborne announced to the nation on Wednesday will have much lasting resonance. Most of the key measures are time-lagged and the headline-grabbing beer tax reduction and the cancellation of the fuel duty rise won’t have an instant and tangible effect on people’s pay packets. The cancellation of a future price rise doesn’t have the same effect as the reduction in an existing cost and whilst Osborne may get plaudits from road hauliers, Joe Public is still feeling the pinch of £1.40 a litre fuel costs. The beer tax reduction of 1p per pint is neither here nor there, certainly when the duty on other alcohol drinks and cigarettes is rising significantly.

    The big political question for me is this. Was this budget, in terms of its scale and ambition, commensurate with the litany of economic problems that now beset us. Growing debt and borrowing, little or no growth in sight, declining living standards for the majority, rising costs and stubbornly high youth employment. Osborne and the Coalition didn’t cause all of these problems, and the global economy has created an unhelpful backdrop, but he’s had three years at the helm and has missed virtually every target he set himself.

    My abiding impression of the Budget, and I wonder if this will be reflected in the polls eventually, is that it was not intrinsically bad, and it did contain the odd decent micro-measure here and there, but it was hopelessly out of kilter with what needs to be done. An economic sticking plaster applied to a festering wound. Cometh the hour and we still await the cometh of the man, I’m afraid.

  17. new thread thingy

  18. @NickP

    Suppose i do not want to employ a Lithuanian. Can I use an add saying no Lithuanians. No I can’t.

    I have old fashioned views on sexuality. Can I talk freely on this subject. No I can’t.

    By the way don’t get me wrong I have nothing against Lithuanians I was just making a point

  19. These new thread monitors really aren’t up to the task!!

  20. @RC

    “As for blaming high savings on “austerity”, that is ridiculous. Households are aware they built up £1.5 trillion of debt in the run up to 2008 and are now paying that back. The fact their spending power has been poleaxed by high energy, petrol and food prices was never forecast by anyone and is making this task even harder.”

    ————-

    It’s hardly ridiculous. Businesses are sitting on hundreds of billions they won’t invest because cuts killed the demand. People were continuing to spend after the crash before the coalition took over, hence we got back to growth.

  21. “The question is, when it comes to 2015 whether people will be willing to risk a change of government despite this realisation.”

    ———-

    Why wouldn’t they consider it? This government is racking up debt only a bit slower than before only for no benefit. Reduced services and jobs and killed off growth.

  22. RC
    “That is a one trick pony of a policy. With a deficit reaching 11.4% by the time they left office, it could not have carried on a moment longer – 14% plus of GDP would have tipped us over the edge.

    What was unexpected was how long both high oil and commodity prices plus the Eurozone crisis continued. No one, but no one expected either to continue for year after year. ”

    Several observations.

    1) Your logic or maths is faulty. Why would there have had to be an ADDITIONAL 3% on the deficit to maintain a stimulus? Explain please.

    2) What was the edge that we would have been tipped over? Explain please.

    3) No one but no one predicted that the EZ would go into a permaslump? Do us a favour, please. If you are going to join in the discussion, please get your facts straight before making sweeping assertions like that. Many, MANY people predicted exactly that outcome. In fact, if you take out those like Juncker and Rehn who predicted that the Confidence Fairy would sprinkle angel dust over the EZ and that the private sector would come out singing, dancing and investing in response to Govt Austerity, you’d find precious few people who predicted anything else.

    It is simply unacceptable to re-write history by saying, “Well, no-one expected THAT response to mass co-ordinated Austerity.” YOU may not have expected it. That’s a problem for YOU to reflect on. Many of the rest of us have (unfortunately) been proved entirely correct in our expectations.

  23. TOH

    I like to punch people who disagree with me. Am I allowed to do that? No I’m not.

    Some of us have to make frustrating sacrifices in order to live in a civilised society.

  24. @Lefty

    RC seems unaware of the Great Depression and the lessons many learned about austerity. Doesn’t appear to have heard of Keynes and the modern day Keynsians like Nobel-winning Krugman who warned of all this.

    And legions of people warned about it online.

  25. Interesting take from @RC on the last thread about nobody seeing this coming. Plenty of others have picked him up on this, but I do recall suggesting on here that relying on a weak currency and exports during a time of coordinated austerity was not a good policy.

    In other news; BBC are reporting today a weather related emergency shutdown at Sellafield. It looks like the whole plant is being taken off line in a standard procedure staged shutdown. It’s understood that there are no safety concerns, but as the wind turbines are still spinning nicely in a stiff south easterly, this might give those who constantly berate wind power as being unreliable some cause for thought.

  26. RC

    “No we didn’t “make the wrong choice”. No one in 2010 expected net exports to be in trouble due to the Eurozone crisis, which is also hanging over business confidence like a black cloud. No one expected high oil and food prices. No one expected the savings ratio to be as high as it is, sucking demand out of the economy.”

    I did and warned about it here

  27. Not to mention, that Labour rather warned about it too. …

  28. I’ll take these polls with a pinch of salt as long as they’re dominated by the lefty biased YouGov. Just ignore YouGov for the real picture and it’s obvious UKIP are eating away at Labour too.

1 4 5 6