We have our regular glut of Monday polls today, with new figures from YouGov, Populus, Ashcroft and ComRes. Topline figures are:

Populus – CON 32%, LAB 35%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 14%, GRN 5% (tabs)
Ashcroft – CON 30%, LAB 32%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 16%, GRN 6% (tabs)
YouGov/Sun – CON 32%, LAB 32%, LD 8%, UKIP 15%, GRN 6%
ComRes/Indy – CON 28%, LAB 31%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 18%, GRN 7% (tabs)

A week ago we had a clutch of polls showing an increased Labour lead following Rochester and Strood. Populus had a couple of polls with 5 point leads, as did Lord Ashcroft, YouGov’s poll on the same day produced a four point Labour lead. This week they’ve all gone back to more typical numbers – it was either a short term effect, or just pure co-incidence. We will never know.

Note that there is a change in ComRes’s methodology. As with their online and constituency polling, they have introducing UKIP into the main voting intention prompt. UKIP are down one point since the previous ComRes poll so this does not appear to have had any radical effect.


533 Responses to “Monday polling round-up”

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  1. BRAMLEY

    FN is always excellent with his graphs-he tries to get to the nub of things.

    Very good.

  2. Tark

    “There’s nothing magical about public spending at 35% of GDP. ”

    I agree it’s not magical but I feel that 30-35% is an excellent target to get the economy really going again to the benefit of the majority.

  3. RICHARD

    @”We deserve to know what we are voting for in 2015 – where will the cuts happen, how deep will they be, or will taxes rise, and if taxes rise, for whom.”

    Absolutely agree.

    Any bets on who will tell us first- GO. EB. NC…………..or NF ?

  4. Colin.
    As it is the Tories who hold the purse strings and they who are promising a
    plethora of investments in this that and the other,surely it should be they who
    tell us first where the cuts which will fund this largesse will come from?

  5. NF? NIgel Farrago or National Front?

  6. “I agree it’s not magical but I feel that 30-35% is an excellent target to get the economy really going again to the benefit of the majority.”

    There is no evidence whatsoever that a particular level of government spending is good for the economy as a whole.

    It is what you do with the money that counts, not the share of GDP.

    As for the Greens, it looks like a lot of former LD don’t knows are deciding to turn their backs on reality and opting for a party promising lots of free stuff and no austerity. How very sad that people are taken in by this.

    Still, where there is a sitting LD MP the figures mostly look much better, especially if prompted by name. Perhaps the Greens can be squeezed back into the fold given the LDs’ excellent record in promoting green energy while in government.

    There are going to be an awful lot of lost LD deposits come the 2015 GE.

  7. @ Colin

    Possibly you are right with regards the timing. Equally if you have 800million to spend there might be more profitable ways of winning votes?

    I think Labour by seemingly endorsing those proposals might have missed a trick. There seem to have been quite a few similar types of announcements in the last year or so that cost the government money. Labour’s tactic seems largely to go along with anything that might be mildly popular instead of offering an alternative such as “right if there is £800m to spend then maybe we should give the nurses and teachers a pay rise” stylee.

    Either way I don’t think this is a game changer in the way that tax cuts or selling council houses or privatisation were in the past.

  8. ANN

    Well I think both main parties have plans for us -should we elect them.

    So I think the game starts afresh as it were-not enough for Labour just to criticise-they need to say why we should vote for them to run the economy for five years-don’t they ?

  9. @Shevii “right if there is £800m to spend then maybe we should give the nurses and teachers a pay rise”
    Maybe I’m too cynical. Capital spends can be delayed or cancelled. Promised pay rises not produced mean protests and strikes.

  10. Agreed Colin. And no doubt [the press will give] Labour’s plans all due publicity and a fair hearing in the national press.

  11. Charts updated folks, and there are a couple of new ones. The approval ratings’ 12-month rolling averages (10-poll), and the ‘all government approval ratings’ charts. The latter is basically all the six individual approval charts rolled into one.

    http://www.statgeek.co.uk/polling/approval-ratings/government-approval/

    I see that the approval ratings in Scotland have started to tumble this month. Perhaps some Smith Report / vow-related fall-out?

  12. YouGov Scottish cross break

    SNP..49%

    LABOUR…21%

    TORY…12%

    LIB/DEM…7%..They are doing much better in Scotland than across the UK.

    UKIP…8%

    GRN…1%

    STATGEEK…………Damn! missed the target by 1%.

  13. @Bramley

    It seems to me that things are going the same way as the March budget coverage

    First euphoric headlines the next day leading to a poll bounce for the Cons on Friday and Sunday

    Second more detailed reporting of the small print leading to the poll bounce disappearing by the following Wednesday

    I can see the Cons on 34/35% tomorrow though, as some people react to the initial newspaper headlines

  14. KEN
    ALLAN CHRISTIE………..Looks like those Ranger Tories could do with an Oligarch, I’ll have a word. ;-)
    ______

    I think their players could do with some cod liver oil….the joints looked a little stiff. ;-)

  15. @Allan

    “Damn! missed the target by 1%.”

    It’s good to have dreams and ambitions. If you get there, you’ll only shift the target to 60%.

  16. Another by-election?

  17. Mark Prichard MP arrested on a rape charge – Sky News

  18. Tories will say; Ok we missed the target but we are some of the way there. And the economy is much improved.
    Labour will say: ner, ner,ner,ner,ner, missed the target missed the target. Let us see what the people say.

    I make no prophecy about this, but the w/e polls will be interesting.
    As a personal observation, I would say that, (A) Alistair Darling is right, it was the most politicised AS of all time. (B) Edward Balls will have to do very much better than he did yesterday in the house.
    (C) The Labour fantasy game that the government in 2006 to 2010 was a UKIP/Green coalition and the events which took place were nothing whatsoever to do with the Labour Party, may fool some of the people, but will not fool enough people.

  19. Hoofhearted – probably not – or at least, not before the general election.

    Bailed until January, so even if he did resign after a charge it would probably be too close to the general election for a by-election (and recent habit seems to be for MPs charged with criminal offences not to resign until they are found guilty).

    We are getting ahead of ourselves anyway given there has not even been a charge. Can we do our usual thing of treating people as innocent until proven guilty, and steering clear of discussion.

  20. Only an allegation. NOT charged as the above post may have implied. Not sure he was arrested either, maybe voluntarily attended, mixed reports.

  21. HH
    Yes, he attended a police stn voluntarily.I am afraid that Alec’s excitement that a Tory MP was in the siht, carried him away with himself.

  22. “Tories will say; Ok we missed the target but we are some of the way there. And the economy is much improved.
    Labour will say: ner, ner,ner,ner,ner, missed the target missed the target. Let us see what the people say.”

    Yep, that would be a pretty fair and balanced summary of what the two parties will be saying.

    :-):-)

  23. @John Pilgrim

    I do track correlations on YG data, and based on the last 20 polls the only statistically significant correlation is Con – UKIP.

    This is at about 0.7, and reaches both the 95 and 99 % Confidence Interval. All the other correlation fail to meet the 95% CI.

  24. Quick note on stamp duty. The average UK housebuyer will save around £700 under the new scheme, which equates to 0.389% of the capital cost of the average property excluding legal fees. [Land Registry latest average house price from 6 days ago is £177,000].

    The buyer of a property worth £225,000 will save £250 or 0.111% of the asking price, while buyers of properties worth £250,000 won’t save a penny. (That’s right – they won’t save a penny).

    Of course, everyone will scream at me that London prices are different, which they obviously are. The average house price in London is a staggering £460,000, but wait to be surprised. The new tax regime will only lead to savings of £800, or 0.174% of the asking price.

    In the UK as a whole, around 70% of properties sold are below the £250K threshold. In London, it’s 22.27%.

    What I don’t think people realise is that, because there were undesirable threshold effects under the old scheme, there are clear threshold effects also in terms of who benefits from the new scheme. In essence, those of you claiming this has been some kind of game changer have been roundly fooled by a compliant press and your own laziness in not checking the numbers. That isn’t to say that this isn’t a sensible reform, but let’s not get carried away – it’s a deliberate political distraction.

    There are some healthy winners and guess what – these are the examples the press focus on. The £275,000 house does save £4,500, which explains why a house £100,000 more than the average and £185,000 less than the London average price is being touted as a ‘typical’ house, but even here the saving is only 1.64% of the total cost. There is also an implication that somehow the savings are linear and equal, which they are not. Very many people now in the process of buying a property will be disappointed to find that their savings are very small, or possibly non existent, depending on precisely where the price is on the old threshold scale.

    Clearly this has got good (if fundamentally lazy) media coverage, and has been readily gobbled up by the ‘game changer gazers’, so I’m not claiming it will have no short term poll impact, but it really, really isn’t a game changer.

    I can’t find the figures, but most people don’t buy houses that often in their lives, and only people buying will benefit, if they do. At most points on the price scale, savings are very modest, and a very small proportion of the costs people are facing.

    If I had a pound for every time someone on UKPR claimed something was a game changer, for me, it would be a game changer.

  25. Poor reporting from the BBC:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-30331569

    Conservative MP Mark Pritchard has been arrested following an incident in central London.

    which implies that he was arrested at the ‘scene of the crime’. Whereas this is merely a formal arrest for questioning and there’s nothing to say that the alleged offence took place recently nor where it is supposed to have happened.

    The BBC report itself is more informative, but that first sentence is what will appear in the search engines.

  26. Mark Pritchard – why the confusion? This seems to be in all the papers:
    A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “We can confirm that a 48-year-old man voluntarily attended a north London police station on Tuesday, December 2 where he was arrested, following an allegation of rape in central London.
    He has been bailed to a date in early January 2015 pending further inquiries.”

  27. It seems to me that things are going the same way as the March budget coverage

    it will be very similar. The tory press aggressively spun that budget as a gamechanger, a blinder etc. It had almost no long term impact on the tories’ vi….

    the deficit reduction schedule is a nonsense. Cable let the cat out of the bag. I don’t think anyone in the Treasury or on the shadow team thinks that any government will stick to the spending cuts required at the beginning of the next parliament. It’s a bit of rhetoric, a stylized position around which a fake debate can be staged…

    this is the sort of thing, in its lack of sincerity, that Carswell ranted about.

  28. @RC

    I you think ex LD Green’s will come back the LD’s because of Green Energy, I suggest you don’t understand why they left the LDs.

    There are a whole load of issues where this group of voters have turned their back on the Lib Dems, for essentially voting through many things their personal principles fundamentally oppose.

    I’m not sure they can be won back in five or ten years, and certainly not five months.

  29. Anthony

    “Until they are found guilty”

    Shouldn’t that be “unless” ??

    Lefty

    No. you are not thick. However the change is the right one as the previous method meant that it was almost impossible to market a property at -say – £251000 because of the crazy add on costs being applied to the entire amount. That was wrong and would never be tolerated with, for example, income tax.

    You are right though that the effect, at the fringes, will simply be to push up house prices again.

  30. ALEC

    @”Quick note on stamp duty. ”

    Eh!

    9 paragraphs
    34 lines.
    1000 words

    that a “quick note”.?

  31. STATGEEK
    @Allan
    “Damn! missed the target by 1%.”

    It’s good to have dreams and ambitions. If you get there, you’ll only shift the target to 60%
    ___________

    Absolutely, I have high expectations ;-)

  32. @R&D – it’s tolerated on VAT. Cross the threshold, and VAT is payable on everything. It’s a killer for micro businesses hovering around the threshold – a real headache. There are schemes designed to allow some simplification, but you need to pay an accountant lots of money to work out if you’re better off under the schemes or not. Nightmare.

  33. @Alec

    “The average UK housebuyer will save around £700 under the new scheme”

    No, it’s the average UK house OWNER that saves. The market value of housing is depressed by stamp duty and the price of housing will adjust upwards where it has been removed. The buyer will pay less stamp duty but for a house that has become more expensive. Notwithstanding the threshold effects, the beneficiaries are disproportionately owners of more expensive properties and those in the South East, except when we get to the very extremes of house prices. Stamp duty only really started to hit hard when you got to the £250,000 threshold.

    []

  34. !ALEC

    @”Quick note on stamp duty. ”

    Eh!

    9 paragraphs
    34 lines.
    1000 words

    that a “quick note”.?
    !

    Blimey Colin, you must have an awful lot of spare time on your hands……………………………

  35. Uh oh ……. another alleged naughty MP.

    Even if found not guilty…………mud sticks.

    If found guilty……headache for PM

    Even Alec’s doom & gloom economic forecasts can’t match this.

  36. Quicker than reading it Paul :-)

  37. COLIN
    ALEC
    @”Quick note on stamp duty. ”
    Eh!
    9 paragraphs
    34 lines.
    1000 words
    that a “quick note”.?
    _____

    LOL :-)

  38. PHIL HAINES

    @” The market value of housing is depressed by stamp duty”

    I have heard a different view from the industry-which is that it is Transactions / Activity which are depressed by stamp duty.

  39. I empathise with Alec’s quick note. It’s like popping into the supermarket for ‘just’ a carton of milk…

  40. Shaun

    [snip]

    To suggest that a £4000 up front cash requirement, if amortised over 25 years, is diddly squat, is to miss the point entirely and shows how far removed some people are from the reality of a young couple scraping together the up front cash in order to buy a house.

    The only thing that concerns me is that this has not been index linked and could end up being another stealth tax.

  41. I know two people who are irritated that they paid out 4k in stamp duty in the last few months. Both are inclined to blame Osborne.. unfair but made me smile.

  42. colin

    Oh, I see: it’s a sort of “never mind the quality, feel the width” attitude, in reverse.

    That’s what puts a lot of people off of Shakespeare I believe. Perhaps you prefer the “uh-oh” type posts where quality, depth and length are all equalised?

    [lol]

  43. COLIN
    That nearly beats a short appraisal on Napoleons war with Russia by L. Tolstoy.

  44. PHIL HAINES
    @” The market value of housing is depressed by stamp duty”
    I have heard a different view from the industry-which is that it is Transactions / Activity which are depressed by stamp duty.

    kind of the same…a buoyant market has a higher volume of trades as money chases goods…reverse for a depressed market.

    transactions /activity (no. of completed deals) and the health of the market (price increasing) are strongly correlated

  45. @Robert Newark

    That is a general truth. [Snip. Why does everyone want to have the last partisan word? Why keep digging – AW]

  46. RC

    Still, where there is a sitting LD MP the figures mostly look much better, especially if prompted by name. Perhaps the Greens can be squeezed back into the fold given the LDs’ excellent record in promoting green energy while in government.

    Logically you’d think that would be the case. As with civil liberties, there’s no doubt that there has been some protection of the green agenda by the Lib Dems. But it doesn’t seem to have happened yet, even in the last batch of Lib Dem-Con marginals the movement from the Greens on the constituency question wasn’t large – less than from even the Tories in comparative terms:

    Con 33 to 27 = -6

    Lab 17 to 13 = -4

    Lib Dem 22 to 36 = +14

    UKIP 20 to 17 = -3

    Green 6 to 5 = -1

    Whether they might be convinced by a targeted election campaign is another matter – and some extent that will depend on the particular MP and their record. But it’s not happening at the moment and it shows that those choosing the Greens are doing so for reasons other than environmentally-related ones.

  47. I do not recall the Autumn Statement being delivered back in the days of Anthony Barber or Denis Healey. We had The Budget – often supplemented by subsequent ‘mini-Budgets’. I also remember something called the Pre-Budget Report. When did the AS become part of the political calendar?

  48. SY ZYGY,
    I frequently pop out for a bottle of milk,buy a trolley full of shopping and then
    find out I have forgotten the very thing I went in for.Doh.

  49. Institute off Fiscal Studies report on the true state of the public finances

    LINK

    http://www.ifs.org.uk/uploads/publications/budgets/as2014/as2014_johnson.pdf

    Read it and weep (or smile, I guess)

    “Massive cuts to come”

    “Require welfare cuts and or tax rises of about £21 billion a year by 2019-20”. (that is a year not a one off)

    “the role and shape of the state will have changed beyond recognition.”

    And the last quote

    “It is surely incumbent upon anyone set on taking the size of the state to its smallest in many generations to tell us what that means.How will these cuts be implemented? ”

    Is that too much to ask? Just a bit of honesty please, Mr Politician.

  50. “It is surely incumbent upon anyone set on taking the size of the state to its smallest in many generations to tell us what that means.How will these cuts be implemented? ”

    ——-

    One thing it means is Boomers will be insulated until they no longer dominate the voting…

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