Latest Channel 4 News:
Row over Malaysian state's coins
'Four shot at abandoned mine shaft'
Rain fails to stop Moscow wildfires
Cancer blow for identical twins
Need for Afghan progress 'signs'

Vote 2010: who's ahead in the poll of polls?

By Channel 4 News

Updated on 11 April 2010

While Labour and the Lib Dems exchange points the Conservative share of the vote anchors - but are the Tories still short of seats to win an overall majority? Professor Leighton Vaughan Williams of Nottingham Business School's Political Forecasting Unit analyses the latest opinion polls.

There are four national polls published today, and they all point to a vote share of about 39 per cent for the Conservatives and about 31 per cent for Labour. The Liberal Democrat performance is proving tougher to pin down, with estimates ranging from 21 per cent to 16 per cent.

This is basically no change for the Conservatives, while Labour and the Liberal Democrats exchange a couple of points.

Reproduced as a uniform swing across the country, the Conservatives would be short of an overall majority, but the markets continue to bet on a clear Tory majority, though with less confidence than yesterday.

Polling Commentary
There are four national polls out today.
BPIX/YG/Mail on Sunday: Con 38, Lab 31, LD 20
ComRes/Sunday Mirror/Independent on Sunday: Con 39, Lab 32, LD 16
ICM/Sunday Telegraph: Con 38, Lab 30, LD 21
YouGov/Sunday Times: Con 40, Lab 32, LD 18

In addition, there is new ICM poll of 96 Labour marginals in which the Conservatives need a swing of between 4 per cent and 10 per cent to take the seat. The figures (changes in brackets since the equivalent survey last January) are: Con 36 per cent (-4), Lab 37 per cent (unchanged), Lib Dem 19 per cent (+5).

The new figures translate into a swing from Labour to Conservative in these key marginals of a little more than 6 per cent, a bit short of the swing required (about 7 per cent) if the Conservatives are to win an overall majority.

On the latest evidence, we are beginning to see a picture of a Conservative Party share of the vote pretty much anchored around 39 per cent, with Labour and the Liberal Democrats bobbing up and down on or about 30 per cent and 20 per cent respectively.

Based on the four featured national polls published today, we have the following share of the vote.

Political Forecasting Unit's (PFU) "polling tracker" again shows the same picture as the daily poll of polls.

Put simply, the tracker is based on the most recent surveys by different polling organisations, and is adjusted so that the more recent the survey the more weight is attached to the vote shares. There is also some statistical smoothing which has the effect that outliers or vote shares that diverge most from the general consensus are allocated less weight.

Election barometer
The PFU's "election barometer", designed to capture the changing state of the race as it unfolds through the campaign, shows the polls predicting the Conservatives falling short of an overall majority.

But an analysis of the money bet in political betting markets currently translates into a Conservative overall majority of 16, and a 58.5 per cent chance of a Tory overall majority, down from 20 and 60.4 per cent yesterday.

Daily poll of polls
Conservative: 39 per cent
Labour: 31 per cent
Liberal Democrat: 19 per cent

PFU polling tracker (recent polls, weighted)
Conservative: 39 per cent
Labour: 31 per cent
Liberal Democrat: 19 per cent

Outcome (Based on polling tracker, assuming national swing reproduced in every constituency)
Conservatives: 309 seats
Labour: 265 seats
Liberal Democrat: 46 seats
Other: 30 seats
Conservatives short of an overall majority by 17.

Where the money is (Analysis based on money wagered on the election in political betting markets)
Conservative: 333 seats
Labour: 222 seats
Liberal Democrat: 62 seats
Translates into a Conservative overall majority of 16

(Chances based on odds from betting exchanges)
% chance of Conservative overall majority: 58.5 per cent
% chance of No overall majority: 34.5 per cent
% chance of Labour overall majority: 6.9 per cent

Professor Leighton Vaughan Williams is Director of the Political Forecasting Unit at Nottingham Business School.

Send this article by email

More on this story

Channel 4 is not responsible for the content of external websites.

Watch the Latest Channel 4 News

Watch Channel 4 News when you want

Latest Domestic politics news

More News blogs

View RSS feed

Cartoon coalition


How Channel 4 News viewers picture the coalition in cartoon form

Token candidate?

Labour leadership candidate Diane Abbott (credit:Getty Images)

Diane Abbott: I am the genuine move-on candidate for Labour

'Mr Ordinary'

Andy Burnham, Getty images

Andy Burnham targets Labour's 'ordinary' person.

Iraq inquiry: day by day

Tony Blair mask burnt during protest outside the Iraq inquiry. (Credit: Getty)

Keep track of Sir John Chilcot's Iraq war findings day by day.

The Freedom Files

Freedom Files

Revealed: the stories they didn't want to tell.

Making a FoI request?

Channel 4 News tells you how to unearth information.

Channel 4 © 2010. Channel 4 is not responsible for the content of external websites.