Like the Survation poll in the Mail on Sunday, YouGov in the Sunday Times show Remain ahead again following the pro-Leave polls a week ago. Topline figures are REMAIN 44%, LEAVE 43%, with fieldwork conducted on Thursday and Friday (full tabs are here). Almost inevitably people are going to look at these polls and assume that the murder of Jo Cox on Thursday has caused the move back towards remain.

My own view is that Jo Cox’s death probably isn’t the cause of the reverse. YouGov also conducted a poll on Wednesday-Thursday for ITV, and that already showed Leave’s lead falling (and indeed, a third of the fieldwork for this poll was conducted before Jo Cox’s death was announced). Looking at the rest of the questions, there is also a marked shift in people’s views on how they think leaving the EU would impact their finances – 33% of people now think that they would be worse off outside the EU, compared to 23% a fortnight ago.

The historic trend in referendums is for people to move towards the status quo. In Scotland a couple of years ago a couple of polls a fortnight out were neck-and-neck, but moved back to a clear NO lead by the final polls (and there was a further swing on the day itself). In the EU referendum polls have consistently shown that people think leave is the riskier choice and that people think it will damage the economy. While it was never inevitable, this has always suggested that late movement towards Remain was quite likely. If people are increasingly worried about Brexit’s impact on their own personal finances, then even more so.

Of course, we will never know for sure. The reality is that we can see changes in headline voting intention in polls, but we can never be certain what causes them: all we can do is look at what events happened at the same time and at what changes there have been in other questions in the poll that might have driven a shift. What we do know is that, whatever the reason, we’ve got four new polls tonight – some before Jo Cox’s death, some after – with three of them showing a shift back towards Remain.

541 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – REMAIN 44%, LEAVE 43%”

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  1. @JayBlanc

    “Anyone suggesting that Japan should be a model for the UK, is suffering from severe fact deficit.”

    Fortunately nobody has suggested this.


    “Well, a man can dream…”

    What? Britain having a modern technologically advanced economy? You need to start living in the real world

  2. Ben Page, Ipsos MORI tweet

    “Our next published poll coming up on morning of 23. In next 24 hrs at least two with remain leads coming out.”

    So – a couple of Remain leads tonight? Interest will be focussed on NatCen’s online/phone one I reckon.

  3. Roland

    “Well it looks as if the British people no longer have the balls to climb out of the slime pit known as the EU.”


  4. “Our next published poll coming up on morning of 23. In next 24 hrs at least two with remain leads coming out.”

    I thought polls could not be published on polling day? Or at least cannot be commented upon?

  5. @ Carfew

    I don’t think anyone has mentioned vertical farming, and using insects as a great source of protein … plenty of room for storage in basements of greenhouse skyscrapers and supplementation of light levels, produced via Thorium.

    We could also stop flushing all that naturally produced nitrogen away…

  6. Norbold…..or perhaps British people have woken up to the enormous gamble they are being asked to make and thought better of it? Brits are a pragmatic people….

  7. The stock market and forex seems to think it’s all over bar the shouting. I wish I could be so sanguine.

  8. Heather

    There was a? poll published on the morning of the indyref – but before polls opened at 7 am.

    I think the restriction on discussing polls only applies to public broadcasters.

  9. Yessss!!!

    Wales :-)

  10. Would it be correct to say that there has been very little “celebrity” endorsement of one side or another, compared to the Scottish referendum?

  11. I am hoping for strong victories by both England and Wales tonight.

    Oldnat: Great to see Wales leading Russia.

  12. ProfHoward

    “Wales leading Russia”

    Fortunately not as in Gordon Brown’s drearily respective mantra that “Scotland should lead in the UK” and”the UK should lead in Europe”.

    I don’t think the Welsh would enjoy being part of the Russian Federation. :-)

  13. WOW! 2 – Nil to Wales!

  14. 2-0 !!

    (bursts into welsh national anthem – with the same linguistic knowledge as John Redwood)

  15. Sorry, I beat you to it Oldnat.

  16. Wales clearly determined to stay in Europe. England don’t seem quite so sure, but will probably swing that way in the last couple of minutes.

  17. If Scotland leads in the UK and the UK leads in the EU does that mean Scotland leads in the EU?

  18. People being guided by betting odds would be wise to remember that if the betting odds at the 2015 General Election were correct, we’d have a Labour Minority government led by David Cameron as PM.

    The betting markets also have a turnout of 50-55% as the clear favourite. A turnout 60-65% which I’ve heard many on this board speculate about is 8-1.

    And if the turnout really is 50%, that’s going to indicate a boost to Leave as it’s generally accepted that higher turnout is better for Remain.

  19. ProfHoward

    I suspect that the comments were all predicated on Gordon Brown “leading in Scotland”. :-)

    Happy to cede precedence to an Irishman. I’m even supporting Northern Ireland (despite their choice of anthem).

    When England meet NI in the final – will they have to play both anthems?

  20. Alec

    For those concerned about the growth of population on global carrying capacity, immigration is a zero-sum game.

  21. I’ve been mulling over the situation where the young are more likely to vote for what they see as the status quo, and the oldies more likely to vote Leave. This seemed to go against the conventional wisdom that youngsters are more likely to be rebellious than the old.

    Then I realised that it’s actually the same people being rebellious! From roughly 1960 to 1980 the young were rebellious, everyone from Teddy Boys through Mods and Rockers and Hippies up to Punk. All in their different ways rebellious. These people are now 55+, and still want to put two fingers up to ‘the man’. Modern youth is much more conformist, with more of them working hard at school, and generally toeing the line.

    So was there a uniquely rebellious generation, which has given rise to the myth of the young being more nonconformist? I’m sure someone will shoot me down, but it seems to be an interesting hypothesis.

  22. When England meet NI in the final – will they have to play both anthems?

    Yes, but the second time it will be played on fife and drums and include the verse about General Wade ;-)

  23. Muddy Waters


  24. thank you OLDNAT

  25. @ R HUCKLE

    “To a certain extent Spain suffers from the same issues as other countries, in that Eastern Europeans from Romania and other countries have migrated taking many low paid jobs. The means that many people without high level skills and experience are undercut by migrants willing to accept low pay and poor conditions.”

    presumably you can share your evidence for this

  26. The Prince of Wales must be glad he’s at the Wales match.

  27. @OldNat

    “I don’t think the Welsh would enjoy being part of the Russian Federation.”

    Given the rate at which Russian oligarchs are buying up properties in Britain, they might not have a choice.

  28. The markets seem certain now, maybe it’s private polling or something…

  29. Anarchists Unite

    Depends, I suppose, on how much the Norwegians have bought up.

    England might end up back as subjects of a Scandinavian empire as well.

  30. @drimbles

    Think youre looking at the wrong market the 65% plus has the lowest odds, I think the 50 to 55% youre looking at being the favourite is the % remain will get

  31. Does the fact that (as I understand it) social categories CDE are much less likely to vote not significantly undermine Leave’s chances of winning on Thursday?

    (Apologies for the “CDE” terminology…)

  32. Not likely to influence the vote, but interesting in itself:

    “A Vote Leave board member has resigned after it emerged that she promoted anti-Muslim material on social media, including an image of a white girl in the middle of a group of people wearing burqas saying: “Britain 2050: why didn’t you stop them Grandad?”

    Arabella Arkwright, a businesswoman who sat on the board and finance committee of Vote Leave, stepped down after the Guardian asked her about a series of tweets and retweets from her account.

    Other retweets included a link from Tommy Robinson, the founder of the English Defence League, suggesting UK Muslims were trying to build an Islamic state in Britain.”

  33. ‘Thoughtful’ – so far as I can see, there is not a single mention in that article you posted – which you say shows the Remain campaign “milking the death of Jo Cox for all they are worth”, *of* the Remain campaign, or indeed the referendum.

  34. 3-0

    They’re rather good, Wales!

    Still, I’m sure England will get a goal if they play for 94 minutes or so.

  35. How far will the polls move if England lose?

  36. I’m confident that anything said by Tommy Robinson, founder of the EDL, bears no resemblance to reality. Perhaps you find him more persuasive.

    These are not “genuine fears”. They are baseless prejudices rooted in an irrational phobia of people who are different, and they are extremely dangerous. Getting all pious and calling them “genuine” offers them support.

    Your political views are out in the open now.

  37. Enjoying Roger Scully’s twitter comment just now:

    Gareth Bale is so cool he might almost be a Psephologist.

  38. AD/AS

    Quite. “Thoughtful” bit of a misnomer. As for bringing in criticism of Remain camp using death of poor Jo Cox – singularly inappropriate and thoughtless. I have not heard any mention of Jo Cox except in genuine remembrance today – apart from the above and Arron Banks commissioning an opinion poll to see how her murder would effect polling. Sigh.

  39. Disappointing England performance tonight, all the fun over on ITV4.

  40. Ps

    Sorry just turned on the news……Mr Farage has been at it as well apparently.

  41. 53 remain 47 leave Nat Cen poll via Britain Elects

  42. Just disappointing in last third. Slovakia incredibly negative, way beyond what I expected.

  43. The NatCen poll had a 4 WEEK survey period, so that tells us nothing particularly useful…

  44. FT say 53 to 47 for Remain, DT say Remain ahead on ORB but too close to call.

    Well done Wales, brilliant performance!

  45. Chris Deerin – “Russia need a better pair o stroikers”

  46. Thoughtful
    “A second referendum is needed in say five years time is needed”

    This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for Brexiters. Successive Tory leaders must now learn to control their party.

  47. EU referendum poll:
    Remain: 53% (+5)
    Leave: 46% (-3)
    (via ORB, phone / )
    Certain to vote.

    via Britain Elects

  48. Looks as all the fun and excitement is all over.

    On the political front

  49. Given current momentum and likely swing back to the status quo, it looks very much like the final vote could be 57% Remain vs 43% Brexit.

  50. @Old Nat

    Any news on how Scotland are doing? Haven’t noticed anything much other than our old hero Stuart McCall is coming back home to Bradford City. Expect fireworks.

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