This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 39%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 11%. The four point Labour lead follows a lead of seven points yesterday and three points on Monday. Normal caveats apply about taking a single poll out of context – a four point lead is clearly towards the lower end of YouGov’s current range – but the underlying average does appear to be falling. Full tabs are here.

While I’m here, I’m seen comments on twitter getting excited/concerned about today’s poll showing the Conservatives ahead amongst under 25s. This is something I wrote about last month. The brief version is that age cross breaks are only small so have large margins of error, especially for under 25s which tends to be the smallest age group with the largest proportion of don’t knows or wouldn’t votes. This means figures for under 25s are extremely volatile, and will swing about wildly from day to day. Taking just one unusual looking one is extremely misleading! Looking at the trend in YouGov’s recent polls it is very clear that, on average, Labour still enjoy a solid lead amongst under 25s.

225 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 35, LAB 39, LD 8, UKIP 11”

1 2 3 5
  1. Yes, that’s what I thought and Roger Mexico confirmed (YOOF figures).

  2. UKPR average has been updated – were the TNS taken out, it would be looking a bit ropey for Labour.

    Instead of doing unsatisfactory polls of Unite members, perhaps Lord Ashcroft could do us all a big favour & poll the marginals again to see whether UNS is a good measure of the likely election result.

  3. Contentious might have been a better word than “unsatisfactory” in my previous post because contentious was what I meant!

  4. @AMBERSTAR – Yes its always interesting to watch the figures change.
    Although still a large Labour Majority at 76 its tumbling each time Anthony re-adjusts the UKPR figures.
    If the Polls continue the way they are going the Cons must be heading for a 33 or 34 next time around and a Labour Majority more like in the 50s – exciting stuff and at least we do have some movement which is surely what we poll watchers actually prefer!

  5. When the U-24’s vote was highlighted and Rogermexico, I think, pointed out the crossbreaks from previous polls to show the current figure was something of a rogue what I found interesting was actually how good the Lib Dems figures were in this age group or at least higher than their overall vote. Maybe they were polling much, much higher in this age group in 2010, but they are still polling higher in this age group now despite, me among others, assuming they had lost that age group completely because of student fees.

    @ Sine from last thread

    I think the problem with coalition in this country is the FPTP system. In the previous 3 party system there was always going to be the issue of the one in the middle having to please both sides of voters but letting one set of their supporters down when they had to make a choice. With PR it would be totally different as you would be more likely to be voting for a party that fitted very closely your values. The only time you would would then be deeply disappointed would be, say if the TUC party put the Tories in rather than Labour or UKIP put Labour in rather than the Tories. Beyond that it would be down to performance and ability.

  6. @AW

    Can you unlock my moderated post in the last thread please? I replied to Jim with a poll, and wondered if there poll had any veracity.

  7. Kind of irrelevant if the Under 24’s have all of a sudden (since yesterday) turned blue as they are statistically the least likely to vote anyway.

    I suspect it’s just one of those polls .

    The most consistent factor is Labour seems permanently in the upper 30’s (probably come in at 34 or 44 tomorrow now I have said that.)

    By the way Colin it was Len McCluskey’s birthday 2 days ago hope you remembered to bake him a cake.

  8. @Amber,

    I suspect due to the incumbency factor the Tories may do rather better than a UNS suggests – though not as much as Peter Kellner was/is predicting! Therefore, agree about the need to do a marginal poll. The last marginal poll suggested as much, but is totally out-of-date now, especially as the Labour lead was higher back then.

  9. @Howard (FPT) – “You mention DC not being able to choose the moment of a GE. I thought that this measure had all-party support so I don’t quite understand your comment that DC will be ‘regretting’ this measure. ”

    I’m only thinking that possibly the best time for Tories might have been after 4 years, or possibly even this autumn. This would have been politically highly acceptable – we’ve got through the worst, we now need strong and stable government etc. and a cut and run to the polls would have been seen in that context.

    Now, Cameron has to hold on for nearly two more years – much more time for a weak economy to hit something nasty.

    I think the fact that all parties supported this isn’t that relevant – DC originated it, and everyone had their short term interests of preventing this PM from having the controlling hand on when the election was called, so they went with it. I also don’t think 5 years is very good anyway – I think 4 years is plenty, especially as in our constitution we don’t have interim counterbalancing elections affecting executive power as in places like the US.

    In terms of the OBR vetting party manifestos and parties having to hold to their programme – I’m afraid that’s a bit delusional really. Your own party failed that in spectacular style, which rather throws up the first question – how does some form of ‘legal’ requirement to fulfill your promises work in a coalition?

    I also reject utterly the idea that the OBR has the final say on what governments do – that’s my job, along with several million other voters. If voters can’t be arsed to take note of such things, they’ll get the government they deserve.

  10. Phil Haines (fpt)

    The tables for the Welsh poll are here:

    ht tp://

    Note the absence of weighting of any kind.

    It’s not quite as odd as it looks because it’s presumably an interim measure just showing the headline VIs. Presumably as Roger Scully reveals the details in his Elections in Wales blog [link in Anthony’s pt piece] where he’s got a post up on Party leaders today, more supporting tables will be published. You may remember we’ve seen this dance of the seven veils approach with some Scottish polls in the past. If you don’t get many dedicated polls (the last Welsh one was in February), you tend to chew over what you do have carefully.

    The Other of the Assembly regional VI is only broken down to Green 7% and ‘Others’. It’s worth pointing out that 7% could well entitle a Party to Regional List AMs depending on how it is spread across the regions and the vagaries of d’Hondt (the Lib Dems got one in North Wales on 5.9% last time), so the Green figure should really have been in the headline figures as I suspected before.

    Roger Scully is promising to blog about the Regional VI next week (hence I suppose the lack of information) but has already mentioned the big discrepancy between Labour’s Constituency and Regional VIs. This is 46-25 = -21 in this poll and the poll back in February:

    showed a similar drop: 46-26=-20.

    Now some of this is ‘conventional’ tactical voting – other Parties’ supporters voting for the ‘least bad’ lead Party in their constituency and then making their ‘real’ choice on the Regional vote. So voters for some PC, Green and smaller Parties of the left (who may not even have a constituency candidate to vote for) will be part of this – this explains partly why the PC vote goes up by 6 points (and 9 in February). Similarly the Conservative vote drops by 7 points while UKIP goes up 10.

    But there may be another, more subtle form of tactical voting. ‘Real’ Labour supporters may realise that their Party will get most of the Constituencies in the region and so not be entitled to any top-up seats on any likely percentage they get on the list. So a regional vote for Labour will be wasted, not because they will certainly fail but they will certainly be too successful. So it may be more useful to lend your vote to another Party you are sympathetic to in the hope it may help them to a regional seat, possibly at the expense of the Conservatives. So this may well be happening in the polls as well, boosting PC, Greens, maybe even UKIP.

    But the question is, is whether this actually happens to the same extent in real life. If you compare previous Welsh Assembly elections the constituency and regional percentages that Labour got were:

    1999: 37.6 – 35.4 = -2.2

    2003: 40.0 – 36.6 = -3.6

    2007: 32.2 – 29.6 = -2.6

    2011: 42.3 – 36.9 = -5.4

    So there is clearly some effect, maybe even an increasing one. But whether it is as large as 20 points is another matter.

    There may be a structural polling problem here, rather similar to the one I’ve previously discussed that occurred with the AV referendum. People who join internet polling panels are likely to be more politically aware than average and so more likely to engage in the sort of tactical voting that I’ve discussed here. So the constituency vote for Labour (and maybe Tory) and regional votes for the other Parties may be overestimated (and contrariwise).

  11. Sorry Amber – it just won’t work like that here – this country is totally different to other European Countries that have PR – it would be a total catastrophy -lol

  12. @Steve,

    “Kind of irrelevant if the Under 24?s have all of a sudden (since yesterday) turned blue as they are statistically the least likely to vote anyway.”

    I certainly wouldn’t say irrelevant, but your point about the under 25s being the least likely to vote is perfectly valid and correct.

    There is no evidence that the under 25s are turning to the Tories in their droves, though.

  13. With all this “confidence” and “better times coming”, why has the Government just announced a cut in interest rates and therefore prizes for Premium Bonds? The overall prize fund will drop from 1 August from an equivalent of 1.50% to 1.30% and the chances of winning from 24,000 to 1 to 26,000 to 1. Seems a very curious thing to do if the economy is now back on track…

  14. Interesting article by Steve Richards, the Independent’s political commentator, in today’s Guardian. He’s talking about Ed Miliband and it’s as fair and objective an analysis as I’ve read for some time. Critical but balanced and I wouldn’t disagree with much, if any of, what he has to say.

    Miliband needs critical friends at the moment.

  15. Sorry:

    The Other of the Assembly regional VI is only broken down to Green 7% and ‘Others’

    Should actually read:

    The Others of the Assembly regional VI is only broken down to Green 7% and ‘Others’ 7%.

    There’s actually no further breakdown of Others on the regional figures, but the constituency figures are:

    Green 2
    BNP 1
    Socialist Labour 0
    Welsh Christian Party 0
    Communist 0
    Respect 0

    so they may have been featured on a the list (though Respect didn’t even contest on 2011)

    On these regional list elections it would be interesting to know if UKIP (and indeed other Parties) are offered as ‘first page’ alternatives or if you need to go to a separate ‘others’ screen.

  16. As an adjunct to today’s GDP figures, it’s worth noting that there is something weird going on with consumer confidence.

    Markit have run a Household Finance Index for the last 4 years or so, and this has (predictably) so far always been well below the standard 50.0 ‘no change’ level. In recent months the index has improved, now up to 41.5 – still heavily negative, but actually a record for the history on this index.

    Within the headline figure, there are some details that suggest worrying (but probably expected) differential impacts, with private renters and mortgage holders showing a rise, while social renters were very pessimistic. Oddly, outright homeowners optimism fell slightly – are older people getting a bit more negative?

    The real stand out figures, however, are the headline rise in optimism for the year ahead, and the household finances data for the month in question (July). Overall, there was a small rise in the former, but a net -17% worsening balance of people’s actual finances on the month. 26% of people said their finances had deteriorated, only 9% improved, and the remainder no change.

    These numbers aren’t necessarily contradictory, but they are odd. You can be less well off now but think the future looks better, but that’s a bit counter intuitive.

    I’m increasingly looking at the sweep of economic data in terms of this contradiction. Confidence is up, but with no clear underlying reason. This is probably why the boost in consumer spending appears to be tied to increased debt.
    Confidence can unlock moribund economies, but likewise the current stage of recovery is not yet built on solid foundations, so we must be vulnerable to reverses and unanticipated shocks.

    With a report out last week claiming the tapering off the the US Feds QE programme will cause a London property crash of -20%, there are still plenty of flies in the ointment.

  17. Here’s a question:

    Assuming somebody wins an overall majority in 2015, just how quickly will the new Government repeal the fixed term parliament act?

    Or is it a one off measure anyway?

  18. Having posted a long and tedious piece that really relates to the previous thread I suppose I might as well partly repeat and revise one that I put there that relates this one:

    If you look at the last ten cross-breaks for under-25s in YouGov polls they are from earliest to latest (Con-Lab-LD-UKIP):











    Which gives a crude average of 31-40-12-7

    It’s quite clear that today’s figures for the age group is an anomaly with the Conservatives way too high, Lib Dems way too low and maybe Labour a little low as well. Incidentally this alone probably adds a VI point or two to the Tory headline figure and takes one off the Lib Dems.

    You will notice that even normally the VI figures for this group move about a lot. There are various technical reason for this: it’s the smallest group; it has the lowest response rate (and so has to be weighted-up most); it has the highest proportion of ‘non-voters. The result is that the number of people the figures are based on can be quite small and so even individual in this part of the sample can have a disproportionate effect. Men under 25 represent about 6% of headline VI, but I’ve seen cases in the past where the number in this group giving a VI might have been in single figures. Though to be fair to YouGov they’ve been getting much larger samples for quite a while.

    Alternatively it may be that the birth of a royal sprog has turned the yoof blue overnight. But I doubt it. :)

  19. @NICKP – I don’t think anyone can answer that one -lol

    Good question though.

    One things for certain though, if the Tories get a Majority they will almost certainly get the Boundaries changed which the LDs stopped in its tracks.
    They are indeed unfair and need adjusting one way or another.

  20. @Sine – Huge ‘if’ that – if they buck the trend of every modern day election, and if they gain enough to have a majority and if they have enough of a majority for rebellious Tories likely to be harmed by boundary changes…. Yes that could happen.

  21. Colin no reply did you forget Len’s birthday!

    Shame on you.

  22. @CHRIS and ‘if’ Labour can hold on long enough until the GE, a ‘if’ Labour can convince enough people to TRUST them again after last time (couldn’t possibly comment on what I mean by that -lol)
    and IF Labour can …………………………………………………………

  23. I’ve tried to estimate from various plots I’ve found, which suggest we’re maybe 20% below the long-term GDP trend. Even growth of 5% per year will take 8-10 years to catch up.

  24. Alec

    It’s the wealth effect!! People see the stock market rising and start believing better times are around the corner, we have even have had a few folk on here saying that the record highs on the stock market proved that the economy is getting better, but unless wages rise to facilitate servicing the increased private debt it will quickly turn sour

  25. pent up demand will lead to lower savings ratios eventually even without higher earnings and house prices starting to recover plus inflation reducing the principle in real terms has encouraged people to spend more.

    Not a bad thing if accompanied by an improvement in the real economy.

  26. Spearmint
    I go with your suggestion on the matter of stakes.

  27. The above was from previous thread.

  28. I take on board what everyone has said about YG polls this week but if tonight’s one replicates the higher Con % then i would say we have a trend, regardless of any other consideration. On its own, however, it makes no difference. The only thing that makes a difference is a substantial reduction in Lab’s score and that is just not happening. It would not surprise me if the LD deserters from 2010 are not even more determined to vote ABT than right wing Lab voters are willing to vote UKIP (the recent trend).

    I agree with Amber that polling in the marginals on these effects is highly desirable. Thus it will have been done, but the results perhaps are being held close to chests.

  29. I think wet liberal /hash attitudes tend to be amongst those born in the early – mid 1960s,
    and Conservative support is more likely to be high amongst the age groups either side of it.

    It is not coincidence that all the sneary Republicans tend to be in that sort of age group – and middle class.

  30. Let’s not bother polling. Just ask @Joe James B to tell us who thinks what, and why.

  31. JJB
    1965 makes them 48 odd. I can’t relate to your comment from those of my own acquaintance, but if you are in that age group, I expect you will perhaps know better. Could you explain to whose post you were responding (if any)?

    I think republicans perhaps may sneer (rather than snear). Do they anyway, more than any other opinionated person?

  32. Your figures invariable add up to 92/93 pc ! Do we assume that 7/8 pc are always dont know. It would be interesting to have an analysis of DKs as to what their views are about life ! A better knowledge of what makes them tick might benefit one or other party .


  33. STEVE

    @”By the way Colin it was Len McCluskey’s birthday 2 days ago hope you remembered to bake him a cake.”

    And you criticise me for being obsessed with McCluskeyana !

  34. My reading is these Tory figures are going nowhere. Labour’s lead is irrelevant when they are absolutely constant in the 38 to 40 region. The LDs aren’t going to deliver votes to the right in a hurry and they won’t vote tactically with the right. Only a powerful economic upturn, money flowing into the pockets of the UKIP voter will lift the Tory vote and that’s a long shot. I know there’s a lot of wishful thinking on the right, that’s understandable, but it’s not based on anything that’s going to bring the Tories the next election.

  35. Simon – no, the balance is “others” (so Greens, SNP, PC, BNP, etc). Figures are percentages *of those that give a voting intention*, so don’t knows and won’t votes are on top of that

  36. @Colin Davis,

    “I know there’s a lot of wishful thinking on the right”

    Probably…personally, I think there’s a lot of wishful thinking on both sides.

    As for me, I’m happy to admit that I haven’t the foggiest how the next GE will go. I strongly suspect no one really does, including those at the top of government.

  37. One thing I would add….I’ve never really agreed with those saying party X/Y/Z has a firm/solid A% of vote no matter what. I’ve no doubt that Labour could conceivably fall below 35%, just as I have no doubt the Tories could fall further below their current voting intention.

    Why? What is clear from previous GEs is that elections are very unpredictable. Anything can happen. Throw in the fact that neither the Tories or Labour (or Libs, for that matter) are unpopular and untrusted at present, and I think you have the classic recipe for electoral unpredictable.

  38. *popular and trusted*

  39. “a four point lead is clearly towards the lower end of YouGov’s current range – but the underlying average does appear to be falling”

    Ooooh Ed it’s going to be a long hot sweaty summer!!

  40. ALEC

    @”This is probably why the boost in consumer spending appears to be tied to increased debt.”

    Is it? :-

    Credit Action report in July on UK Personal Debt at end May 2013 vs end May 2012.

    The numbers are :-

    Secured Debt :
    £1266 bn vs £1252 bn
    That is an increase of 1.1%
    Credit Action say House Prices rose by 2.6% in that period.
    I don’t have the data for comparative volume of mortgages in the above numbers.

    Unsecured Debt ( Consumer Credit):
    £158bn vs £158bn-.
    That is an increase of Zero. %

    Credit Action’s July Report contains this interesting statement :-

    “The Legal & General MoneyMood survey for Q2 2013 has shown a small improvement in household finances.
    ? More households (45%) say that they have money left over after paying bills and debts than in April 2012 (43%).
    ? Fewer households (15%) say that they are struggling to pay bills and debts compared to the same period last year (16%).
    ? For those households that say they are struggling, the average monthly shortfall is down from £74 to £72.

  41. “This means figures for under 25s are extremely volatile, and will swing about wildly from day to day”

    Being an under 25 myself I do swing about wildly but not in the political sense..

  42. Careful Allan – Paul is around and will be asking whether you have taken your Ovaltine and already have pajamas on.

  43. howard

    “Paul is around”

    No I’m not.

  44. HOWARD

    You spoke too soon. ;-)

  45. @Nick P

    I suppose the party that does it is the party that can gain more from it not being fixed term (both or neither). Fixed is fine, but if we must have it, I’d prefer 4 years to reduce governments’ complacency.

  46. Somehow appropriate that Boris Johnson gets to unveil this:


  47. COLIN

    From your link

    “Across the nation we are saving more than this time last year. The latest figures show the average monthly saving (for those households who say they can afford to save) is £88 across the UK, up £17 per month (24%) since April 2012 (£71).”

    That alone must be a good indicator that the economy is doing better though I would had thought the average monthly savings per household would had been higher.

    I wont say how much but I can honestly say I can put more than £88 per month away after bills etc.

  48. I have taken the 16 July YG results from the table on the right and considered them from the viewpoint I adopted for AW’s topic “zero points or nine points” of 16 July,
    that is , that the situation is unchanged and what is happening is that the successive polls are repeated measurements of that unchanged situation using a polling measure with a random error of +/-3% in the VI shares.
    That gives a Conservative share of 32% +/-0.5%
    and a Labour share of 39% +/-0.4%
    Combining these figures gives a difference of 7%+/-0.65%
    Using the table’s figures for the L-C difference, for which the random error in the difference recorded in an individual poll is about 4.2%, say 4%, then L-C is 6.7%+/-0.5%, which correlates with the above result.
    This strongly supports AW’s repeated warnings about placing too much reliance on the variations between individual polls, but also shows that actually over the month all the individual polls are quite consistent with the assumption that nothing has changed at all.

  49. The Graun has done some research on illegal drug use in Britain.

    Quite interesting results as a young person!

1 2 3 5