Friday, February 6, 2015

Poll of Polls update, and a Six Nations prediction

I've been keeping a beady eye on the Scottish subsamples from GB-wide polls over the last couple of days to see if all the hoo-ha in the gullible/pliant press (delete as appropriate) over Labour's fictitious constitutional "rules", plus the latest rehashing of The Vow, has had any obvious effect on voting intentions.  There's been nothing out of the ordinary - there was a big SNP lead of 22% in yesterday's YouGov subsample, while today's shows a more middling gap of 11%.  The end-of-week Populus subsample shows an SNP lead of 9%, which until a few days ago would have been considered a good result, given that Populus have consistently been the least favourable firm for the SNP.  However, they've recently revised their methodology to mostly (not entirely) eliminate the anti-SNP bias.  So a 9% lead now looks pretty run-of-the-mill.

Today's update of the Poll of Polls is based on the full-scale Scottish poll from YouGov, plus seven subsamples - four from YouGov, two from Populus and one from Ashcroft.  The increase in the SNP's lead is simply caused by the inclusion of a full-scale poll.  There's generally a narrower gap in updates that rely solely on subsamples.

Scottish voting intentions for the May 2015 UK general election :

SNP 45.6% (+3.6)
Labour 26.5% (+0.4)
Conservatives 16.2% (-2.1)
Liberal Democrats 4.9% (-0.8)
UKIP 3.8% (-0.1)
Greens 3.3% (n/c)

(The Poll of Polls uses the Scottish subsamples from all GB-wide polls that have been conducted entirely within the last seven days and for which datasets have been provided, and also all full-scale Scottish polls that have been conducted at least partly within the last seven days. Full-scale polls are given ten times the weighting of subsamples.)

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And now for another of this blog's annual rituals, which comes about because a family member always asks me to fill in a prediction form for her work.  A bit of a rushed job this year - in retrospect I may have pushed the boat out a bit too far with the 20+ point margins.  However, I think it'll probably still prove to be marginally more accurate than Iain Dale's predictions for the 59 Scottish seats at the general election.  (Well worth looking up if you're in need of a laugh - he reckons Labour and the Lib Dems are going to hold off the SNP virtually everywhere, simply because they were "safe seats" back in 2010.)


Wales to beat England by less than 10
Ireland to beat Italy by 20 or more
France to beat Scotland by 20 or more


England to beat Italy by 20 or more
Ireland to beat France by less than 10
Wales to beat Scotland by between 10 and 19


Scotland to beat Italy by less than 10
France to beat Wales by less than 10
Ireland to beat England by less than 10


Wales to beat Ireland by less than 10
England to beat Scotland by 20 or more
France to beat Italy by between 10 and 19


Wales to beat Italy by between 10 and 19
Ireland to beat Scotland by between 10 and 19
England to beat France by between 10 and 19


Ireland 4 wins
Wales 4 wins
France 3 wins
England 3 wins
Scotland 1 win
Italy 0 wins


  1. Way things are going looking like 45% and 45 seats. Wouldn't that be poetic.

    Only potential dark cloud is the fact that the differential swings seen in Ashcroft are mirroring the profile of SLAB majorities. So unlike a normal linear spread of majorities everything is bunching up at the same point on the Swingometer.

    With an average 20% swing SNP will get 25% where they need 20% (YES areas with big SLAB majorities) and 15% where they need 10% (NO areas with smaller SLAB majorities) so everything falls like skittles. Problem is if there is a swingback to SLAB over the next 3 months they could save a lot of seats if they peg the swing to 15% average.

  2. Oh I wish you were right about the rugby :(

  3. wrong tonight with rugby - hope you very wrong tomorrow :)

  4. James, your blog is superb, but I hope you know nothing about rugby!

  5. James, you predicted Ireland would beat Italy by at least 20 points. Final result: Ireland 26 Italy 3. That's amazing dude!