Ten days to go to the election and we’ve had interesting day of polls – four new GB polls, some new constituency polling and a new Scottish poll. The four GB polls today are the weekly Ashcroft and ICM telephone polls, the twice weekly Populus poll and, to come later on tonight, the daily YouGov poll for the Sun:

  • Populus had figures of CON 33%, LAB 36%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 14%, GRN 5% (tabs). They continue to produce figures that are more favourable to Labour than many of the other pollsters – you have to go all the way back to August to find a Populus poll with a Conservative lead.
  • In contrast ICM have tended to produce some of the better polls for the Conservatives – their last four polls showed Conservative leads and today’s has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 32%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 13%, GRN 5% (tabs)
  • Lord Ashcroft’s weekly poll had topline figures of CON 36%, LAB 30%, LDEM 9%, KIP 11%, GRN 7% (tabs) – this is obviously a particularly good poll for the Conservative party, but all the usual caveats apply. No other poll is showing such positive figures for them.

Lord Ashcroft also released four new constituency polls, this time covering four UKIP target seats (or at least, four where he had previously found them doing well, I’m not sure whether Cannock Chase was ever a seat they were targetting – certainly Ashcroft’s poll found respondents reporting a lower level of UKIP activity there). When Ashcroft previously polled these seats he found UKIP in an extremely close second place, this time he found them falling back and seemingly out of serious contention in three of them:

  • Cannock Chase is a seat the Conservatives won on a vast swing last time, but where the new MP has stood down after various gaffes. In October 2014 Ashcroft found UKIP two points behind Labour, 30% to Labour’s 32%. The latest poll still shows Labour ahead, but UKIP now trail in third place on 21%.
  • Great Grimsby is widely regarded as the best opportunity for a UKIP gain from Labour at this election – a Lincolnshire fishing port where the veteran MP Austin Mitchell is standing down. In December Ashcroft found UKIP just a point behind Labour, but they’ve fallen back considerably since then and today’s poll has them 17 points behind Labour
  • Great Yarmouth fits the pattern for a typical UKIP target seat, a seaside town and marginal seat out on England’s east coast. Last July Ashcroft found a tight three way fight – Con 33%, UKIP 31%, Lab 28%. Today’s poll has UKIP falling back to 24%, but Conservative and Labour still in a close battle – Con 36%, Lab 34%
  • Castle Point is the only one of the three where UKIP still seems to be in the race. It’s an unusual seat – the former Conservative MP Bob Spink sort of defected to UKIP in 2008 and contested the seat as an Independent in 2010, coming second with 27%. In February Ashcroft found UKIP just one point behind the Tories, in today’s poll the Conservatives have widened their lead to 5 points.

Finally a new TNS poll of Scotland shows the SNP moving into an even stronger lead. Their topline figures with changes from their last Scottish poll are CON 13%(nc), LAB 22%(-2), LDEM 6%(nc), SNP 54%(+2), UKIP 2%(+1), GRN 2%(-1). Tabs are here.


808 Responses to “A round up of Monday’s polling”

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  1. shelts

    AdamB is right, Tories are going to cruise home now….

    :-(
    ————————————————-

    I wish so, but nope, it is still slightly in favour of Labour. Conservatives have not managed to bring back home good% of UKIP Conservatives

  2. I don’t quite understand the spin on the growth figures. we are told when growth figures are good then its fantastic news for the tories(not the libdems their coalition partners though!) but when growth figures are bad then it doesn’t matter! interesting spin.

  3. @crossbat11

    I liked reading that post. I’m going to read it every time I see a poll I don’t like to try and ease my nerves lol.

  4. @LITTLE RED ROCK

    Ha Ha. Nice analogies there!

    As an increasingly forlorn LP voter I’m taking heart from the analysis that plots a way forward for EM even factoring in the latest polls.

    http://may2015.com/featured/election-2015-prediction-despite-a-few-good-polls-the-chances-of-camerons-survival-have-not-improved/

  5. @ Chris Lane

    You left out Big Jonny Bercow

  6. OLD NAT
    “Since defence, foreign policy, welfare and macro-economics are the main items that Westminster controls on behalf of the whole UK, they really should be the dominant policy discussions.
    Sadly, there is little discussion of the first two because few parties dissent from the comfy consensus.”
    I agree, sadly this is a comfort based on a high level of misinformation and sheer b. ignorance.
    CARFREW
    “Summat to lift all our spirits…”
    No it wasn’t – oh, sorry, I thought you said “Summit”

  7. @ChrisLane1945

    Tories lose 30 to Labour
    Labour gains 20 from Tories

    What happened to the other 10?

  8. Why would companies invest when they don’t know if they’re going to be slapped with huge taxes post election? Look at historical data, Growth slows in election years. That goes for not just the UK.

    US 2004 elections, GDP/Growth down on 2003
    UK 2005 elections, GDP/Growth down on 2004
    etc

    Companies don’t like uncertainty, especially when the options of economic policy are so different (Lab vs Con). One is big-corp friendly, the other is big-corp unfriendly.

  9. graham

    Exileinyorks
    I ununderstand that, but I suspect that the GDP figures are sufficiently poor for Labour to make some headway with a message that ‘Things are getting worse again ‘and ‘All that pain for nothing’ etc. It begins to revive the idea that Osborne has cocked things up on the economy and that Balls has read it better.
    ————————————————————————–

    First of all there is not evidence things are getting worse, Balls cannot make such a bland accusation, many economist will attack him, even Labour supporting ones, which have regarding rent controls.

    If one looks at the history of GDP, it has always gone through these kind of swings, and they mean nothing.

    Remember we had one of the best periods for purchasing new cars.

    Business and large corporation have cut expenditures, on the expectation of higher taxes should labour come in, this is a regular occurrence, pre-election. conservatives wins, we will have one of the bet period of growth over the next 3 months.

  10. @Carfrew 3.19

    Aye, but I’m still to be convinced either way!

    On another topic: if, after winning the most seats but failing to get a majority, neither Labour nor the Tories agree to go into coalition, and present % Vis still stand on May 7th, anyone got any idea as to who may end up being Secretary of State for Scotland in either case?

  11. Sorry – that was a bit complicated. Try again.

    Given present VIs, if Labour gain the most seats but fail to get a majority and refuse to go into coalition, they may well have several LiS MPs to choose from (though not necessarily JM or Douglas Alexander). Who would be the front runner as Sec. of state?

    Idem for the Tories – even more limited as Mundell may lose his seat, although the Tories might still end up with one (Borders) or even three seats in Scotland (Mundell included).

    Anyway, who will be the Sec. of State? Names on a postcard……….

  12. And it is snowing again!

  13. @JSTEPHENSON

    “Why would companies invest when they don’t know if they’re going to be slapped with huge taxes post election? Look at historical data, Growth slows in election years. ”

    ——

    What happened to growth in UK in the year leading up to the 2010 UK GE?

  14. WB,
    I have only just caught up with the thread but your post at I think 1-20 was lovely.

  15. GRAHAM

    “There goes a man who clearly knows little about macroeconomics”

    You’re so right! Throughout my years at LSE, professor Robert “swingometer” Mckenzie drilled this into my thick skull over and over again and I carried this unalterable truth with me all the way to North America, in pursuit of my MBA : “I know nothing about macroeconomics” is engraved on my heart.

    In my defense though, I DID sleep at a Holiday Inn Express last night, and things suddenly seem so much clearer.

  16. @JOHN B

    “Aye, but I’m still to be convinced either way!”

    ———

    Well I spose if Labour offered Independence and Sturgeon was prepared to end Devolution in return for being Deputy PM alongside Cameron…

  17. David K

    @EXILEINYORKS
    Well we have had the GDP figures now, and they seem to fit perfectly into the pattern of polldrums….
    Not weak enough for Labour to push a simple narrative that the economy is flatlining.

    _____________________________________

    Perhaps not, but 5 successive quarters of slowing growth – edging ever closer toward zero growth – is a trend that has to bear some political capital?

    ———————————————————–

    Where are you getting your stats from?

    Last five GDP figures, 2.7, 2.9, 2.8, 3 and now 2.4

    If this is creeping towards zero, I need to go back to school. :-)

  18. carfrew

    @JSTEPHENSON

    “Why would companies invest when they don’t know if they’re going to be slapped with huge taxes post election? Look at historical data, Growth slows in election years. ”

    ——

    What happened to growth in UK in the year leading up to the 2010 UK GE?
    ———————————————————–
    Not very good, if you take into consideration that the Labour Government borrowed approx. £160 Billion in the tax year 2009-2010. The growth was more or less the money the government borrowed.

  19. @Ashman

    That doesn’t answer the point at issue now does it?

    It introduces a different point, whereupon one might invite you to consider what happened to growth and the deficit in the couple of years post 2010.

    Only when the Coalition reverted to stimulus post Omnishambles did things recover…

  20. @Ashman

    Incidentally, most of the deficit post-crash was to cover the cost of the banking crunch: the impact of suddenly losing nearly 7% of the economy, with resulting collapse in tax revenues and increase in benefits.

    Most of the deficit was therefore not injecting new money into the economy. Only about 30Bn of the deficit was stimulus, resulting in over 2% growth.

    Coalition made initial cuts of around that amount, and we lost the 2% growth.

  21. Who is this Neil Hay chappie ?

  22. @ashman re. “automatic growth if Tories win and poor growth due to expectation of a Labour gvt.”

    I must say you did give me a good belly laugh.. Wake up Ashman the eighties were three decades ago! Have you been informed that Neil Kinnock is no longer Lab leader?
    ————————————————————————

    LOL, The market views Miliband as the old Kinnock.

    Many people get fooled into believing such comments as you have stated, the FTSE 100 is currently hording approx. £50 Billion in cash, when you look at the FTSE All Share, it becomes an interesting story.

    Wait and see, this is holding back on investment, should the Conservatives win, fun time, stock market wise :-)

  23. I always look at poll results, i do not really take daily polls serious so you should add Yougov together in batches of 5 /7 and come out with the average.

    This way you can judge trends.I try not to be influenced by personal/political views. Based on what I see and read,its close with everything to play for.

    Tories thinking they have won is always the case they believe they are born to rule.Back in the nineties i stood in a then relatively safe Labour council seat.When i entered the count the Tories kept shouting “loser ” .When they started to open the boxes and count the votes and the Labour vote was ahead.The Tory agent reassured everybody that the these were Labour boxes and Tory ones were yet to be opened. As all the boxes were open and labour were still in the lead ( by a mile ) the agent then said it was close and he would probably demand a recount if Labour won.In the end we won by 56% to 35%.

    I also sat with a Tory friend in 97 and she would not believe they were losing .

    I am not saying Labour will win , i expect a Tory lead government ( forever the pessimist ) , what I am saying is
    you have to hand it to them, their political arrogance knows no limits.

    I

  24. Ashman

    George, I mean Ashman, have you got time for all this?
    Dave wants you out on the campaign trail

  25. @Ashman

    “Wait and see, this is holding back on investment, should the Conservatives win, fun time, stock market wise :-)”

    ————

    What happened to investment in the next two years following the last GE?

  26. Scottish YG crossbreaks

    Regulars may remember that I started tracking these after the methodological change in January which suggested that they were (at least partially) based on Scots, not GB, factors.

    Hopefully, they might have provided early indications of trends.

    After 4 months, the indications are that they do nothing of the sort!

    For each Full Scottish (3 in January, 4 in February, 5 in March and 7 in April) I’ve calculated the mean scores in the previous 7 crossbreaks, and compared that with each Full Scottish, and averaged both sets of data for the month.
    (Fairly crude analysis – but should be indicative).

    In January, YG crossbreaks underestimated SNP full poll performance by 4.7 points : February by 3.3 points : by March 6 points and April by 7.7 points.
    Labour – Jan over estimate by 0.3 : Feb and March under by 2 points : April over by 2.4.
    Con – Over estimated in each month – Jan 2.7 : Feb 3.5 : Mar 1.6 : Apr 1.7
    LD – Under estimated by 0.3 in Jan, then over by 1 point in Feb : 0.2 in Mar : 1.7 in April.

    It’s looking like the YG Scots panel was sailing along unchanged, while in the real world things were happening.

  27. @OldNat

    I was said that the other day and led me to wonder if YouGov were over-estimating Labour and that the Cons might be ahead. The methodological change not picking up real movements.

  28. CB11
    ‘The YouGov poll showed a Tory lead for the first time for a fair period, but it was 1% and could well be reversed tonight within the MOE margins’

    Have you overlooked the fact that YouGov had the Tories ahead just a week ago on April 21st?

  29. Brilliant post from you earlier showing the previously unrecognised current “dead-heat” in C and L % shares.

    Labour can draw some further reassurance from the polls in marginals, reportage of “the battle on the ground”, and DUP suspicion of the Cons, but still face a drubbing in Scotland alongside the Lib Dems. The problem for the Cons is that they cannot gain more than couple of seats in Scotland (and even that would be freakish), and that every single opinion poll we have seen, including the good ones for Con, shows that there is a swing to Labour in E & W which will deliver between 30 and perhaps 60 Con seats. Cons will claw some of this backform LibDEms but Labour will also win 10-15 seats for the Lib Dems too.

    I simply cannot see aside of sudden voter upheaval how either Cons or Lab are going to “win” this GE. It looks as if all three main UK parties may lose more than they gain politically (even if Lab add a few more seats) and that only SNP and perhaps UKIP will be able to claim a significant advance on all fronts when the dust settles.

    I wouldn’t rule out a Grand Coalition as fast as most commentators. Polling shows that most voters recognise that Cons and Lab have distinct and complementary strengths and weaknesses, which could be met by handing most economic Ministries to Cons and most health and social Ministries to Labour, and dividing the rest. Works OK in Germany. IMHO this would satisfy more people in UK as a whole than a weak minority Government at the mercy of a Party representing about 3% of the total electorate.

  30. @Ashman
    “Last five GDP figures, 2.7, 2.9, 2.8, 3 and now 2.4”

    The figure you posted are annualised GDP figures whereas @ExileinYork was talking about quarterly GDP.

  31. Carfrew, Ashman

    Surely what matters as far as polling and the election is concerned is what perception on economic competence the voters have, not who has the right policy.

    I think all the pollsters show Osborne & Cameron well ahead of Ed B & Ed M and one set of figures showing lower growth is IMO very unlikely to change that significantly. Indeed as I said earlier it may scare off people who were thinking about voting for change.

  32. Just seen the Russell Brand story, what was EM thinking of? IMO easily the biggest individual mistake so far, it puts the Villa & West Ham faux pas well into the shade. It’s going to cause some real damage to Labour’s prospects.

  33. I meant “GRAHAM” – brillian post

  34. @Ashman

    Incidentally, most of the deficit post-crash was to cover the cost of the banking crunch: the impact of suddenly losing nearly 7% of the economy, with resulting collapse in tax revenues and increase in benefits.

    Most of the deficit was therefore not injecting new money into the economy. Only about 30Bn of the deficit was stimulus, resulting in over 2% growth.

    Coalition made initial cuts of around that amount, and we lost the 2% growth.
    ——————————————————————–
    Banking was lent approx. £120 Billion via share purchase and loans

    Govt borrowed approx. £90 Billion in 2008- 2009, that was part of it. They then borrowed approx £160 in 2009-2010.

    If the government had not injected that capital into the banks the economy would have suffered even more, Therefore, injecting £160 Billion, and asking banks to go easy on defaulting mortgages, and continues leading at a certain level stabilised the economy, in 2009-2010.

    That £160 Billion was injected into the economy, had it not we would have had a melt down.

  35. CHRISLANE1945

    “My Election Prediction is”

    After reading that you predict SNP to win 51 seats I will take the rest of your prediction with a large dose of salt.
    my findings after speaking to Labour and Conservative voters is that the SNP are unlikely to win more than 40 seats at the General Election, that in itself is still a remarkable result for them but Labour did better than that in 2010.

  36. @ToH

    You are talking about how polling currently stands, our discussion is over what might change the polling in the future…

    Or not.

    Like you often said economic recovery would produce Tory gains etc.

  37. @ BANTAMS

    I do not agree.

    Far more significant events have had negligible effects on all parties.

  38. Carfrew

    I think the economic recovery will, you know my forecast which I still think the most probable result.

  39. Some of you may have read the May2015 article about how tricky it is for the Tories to stay in power but for those that didn’t read it (or even for those that did) I’m commandeering one of their very nice graphs to make a point.
    http://may2015.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Screen-Shot-2015-04-27-at-08.23.22.png
    If the Tories exceed expectations and limit their loses to the 25 seats or so that May2015 think are goners I just don’t see Cameron managing to do anything other than just limp over the line in a multi party coalition that anyone other than Clegg wouldn’t bother with. Thus if I was a Labour strategist I’d make decapitating Clegg a priority because I genuinely think that (save for a massive shift in the polls) if Clegg is gone it actually might be impossible for Cameron to form a government because he is unable to convince Clegg’s successor supporting the Tories is worthwhile.

  40. @Ashman

    I agree with the value in injecting the money to save the banks. My point was about the smaller additional component of the deficit that served as stimulus, and concerning whether growth always slows before an election.

  41. @BANTAMS
    Just seen the Russell Brand story, what was EM thinking of? IMO easily the biggest individual mistake so far, it puts the Villa & West Ham faux pas well into the shade. It’s going to cause some real damage to Labour’s prospects.

    _____________________________________

    How, precisely, does it do that?

  42. carfrew

    @Ashman

    “Wait and see, this is holding back on investment, should the Conservatives win, fun time, stock market wise :-)”

    ————

    What happened to investment in the next two years following the last GE?

    ————————————————————————

    Cutting down on wasteful expenditure, VAT hike, which if the Miliband wins, he will continue with as it raise approx. a additional £12 billion a year. Which was the right decision, because it is now raising good revenue which assisting in reducing deficit.

    Also cutting borrowing, interest rates, on borrowing fell by approx. 1% within months of the coalition coming into power, from approx. 4.5%. Now currently trending at 2%.
    If you calculate, billions that have been saved just on interest payments.

  43. @THE OTHER HOWARD

    “Ithink the economic recovery will, you know my forecast which I still think the most probable result.”

    —————

    I am finding it a little tricky to keep track of all the forecasts!! Mine is dead easy: it’s “???”.

  44. rayfromthenorth

    Ashman

    George, I mean Ashman, have you got time for all this?
    Dave wants you out on the campaign trail
    ————————————————————————–

    LOL

  45. Brand invterview is going to have as much affect on the polls as Cameron’s schofield interviews. None.

  46. Exileinyorks
    ‘Furthermore it is not entirely clear whether weak figures would favour the Tories with their lead in opinion economic competency or Labour on need for change’

    It must be likely that the weak data will – at least – reduce the Tory lead re-economic competency – just as poor Trade Figures in 1970 undermined Harold Wilson.

  47. @Ashman

    That list of party memes does not address the matter we were discussing on business investment in the immediate aftermath of 2010 GE.

  48. Bantams
    I wouldn’t go that far. I agree the Brand interview is a stupid move because there are some small risks for no real potential gains thus its a waste if Milliband’s valuable campaigning time. A catastrophic error though? Not really.

  49. @Bantams – can you explain how that could be re Brand interviews? Have I missed something? Forgive me if you are being ironic but you’ve call a game changer virtually every day.
    I agree with Fraser it won’t make a jot of difference.

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