Elections Etc

Forecast update for the Historical Referendums and Polls based Method

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by Stephen Fisher and Alan Renwick.

The small shift towards Remain in the polls that we observed last week has been reversed. Setting aside Don’t Knows, our polling average for Remain has dropped back from 53% to 52%. Despite there being little difference between the headline figures for yesterday’s ICM phone and online polls, our estimate (and corresponding adjustment) for the typical difference between the two modes of interviewing has barely changed.

The one-point drop in our polling average has led to a corresponding one-point drop in the forecast share of the vote for Remain, from 55% to 54%. The 95% prediction interval surrounding this estimate has again narrowed very slightly to ±12 points. So we are now forecasting that Remain will win between 42% and 66% of the vote.

Overall the probability that the Remain vote will be larger than the Leave vote has dropped from 79% last week to 73% now.

The method behind this forecast is based on the historical experience of referendum polls and referendum outcomes in the UK and on the EU elsewhere, as discussed here.

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