Newspoll: 52-48 to Coalition

Another poll with 52-48 two-party preferred – but this time in the opposite direction.

The Australian reports that the latest Newspoll has the Coalition leading 52-48, down from 53-47 a fortnight ago, from primary votes of 43% for the Coalition (down two), 35% for Labor (up three) and 10% for the Greens (down two). Kevin Bonham in comments observes that Newspoll is still using 2010 preferences, and believes the result may have been 51-49 off those of the September election. More to follow.

UPDATE: GhostWhoVotes relates Tony Abbott’s approval rating is down three to 42% and his disapproval is up four to 42%, while Bill Shorten is respectively up two to 39% and up three to 27% (a considerably more modest result than his 51% and 30% from Nielsen). Abbott’s lead as preferred prime minister has narrowed from 46-30 to 44-33.

Tomorrow should bring the weekly Essential Research fortnightly aggregate, which we learned today has Labor up a point on the primary vote to 36% but the Coalition two-party preferred lead steady at 53-47, and primary votes from the ReachTEL poll conducted on Thursday night, which Channel Seven this evening reported as having the Coalition leading 51-49.

UPDATE 2 (ReachTel): The ReachTEL poll has the Coalition down on a month ago from to 45.4% to 43.8%, Labor down from 35.3% to 34.2%, the Greens up from 8.6% to 9.8%, the Palmer United Party up from 5.7% to 6.6% and others up from 4.9% to 5.7%. These fairly modest changes have resulted in a two-party preferred shift from 52-48 to the Coalition to 51-49.

UPDATE 3 (Essential Research): The Essential Research poll has both major parties up a point, Labor to 36% and the Coalition to 45%, with the balance coming off rounding, the Greens and others being steady at 9% and 11% respectively. Two-party preferred is steady at 53-47. Also included are questions on foreign affairs, the most interesting findings of which are that 29% rate the government’s handling of the Indonesian relationship as good versus 42% for poor, and 49% expect relations with Indonesia to worsen under the new government compared with only 11% who think they will improve. Improvements are expected to worsen slightly with China and India, but to improve with English-speaking countries. A question on the importance of Australia’s various international relationships finds increases since early last month in the “very important” rating for every country except New Zealand. The new government also scores weakly on the question of “trust in the government’s handling of international relations”, with “no trust” the most popular of four responses at 35%. Respondents are not generally exercised about the thought of Australia spying on Indonesian leaders, which is supported by 39% and opposed by 23%. Other questions find 18% rating the new government’s performance as better than expected, 27% as worse and 47% “about what expected” and 15% favouring cuts to services and higher taxes to return the budget to surplus against 69% who would prefer delaying the return to surplus.

UPDATE 4 (Essential Research state polling): Essential Research has released results of state voting intention for the three largest states from its last month of polling, all of it well in line with what we’ve been seeing elsewhere recently:

• In New South Wales, the Coalition has a lead of 58-42, which compares with 64.2-35.8 at the election. Primary votes are 49% Coalition (down 2.1% on the election), 33% Labor (up 7.4%) and 8% Greens (down 2.3%).

• In Victoria, Labor leads 52-48 (51.6-48.4 to the Coalition at the election). Primary votes are 41% Coalition (down 3.8%), 38% Labor (up 1.8%) and 13% Greens (up 1.8%).

• In Queensland, the Liberal National Party leads 57-43 (62.8-37.2 at the election). Primary votes are 46% LNP (down 3.7%), 32% Labor (up 5.3%) and 7% Greens (down 0.5%).

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

2,061 comments on “Newspoll: 52-48 to Coalition”

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  1. Newspoll are still using 2010 preferences. I get about 51-49 from the same primaries using 2013 preference estimates (by both methods I’m using.)

    No-one is replicating Nielsen but there is evidence for narrowing even without it. My aggregate’s at 50.8 now.

  2. Both polls could be right given the MOE.
    No homneymoon at all for the coalition, in fact it would seem the public want a divorce already.

  3. @Mod Lib

    I posted in another thread that even if you remove 2 (or 4 points) points from Labor on the Nielsen Poll, it’s still pretty close call.

  4. William,

    and yet their newspapers were quick to claim a huge history making slump in support of Abbott rather than the possibility of a rogue.

    Perhaps Im just jumping to conclusions like they do.

  5. [Kevin Bonham
    Posted Monday, November 25, 2013 at 11:08 pm | PERMALINK
    Newspoll are still using 2010 preferences. I get about 51-49 from the same primaries using 2013 preference estimates (by both methods I’m using.)

    No-one is replicating Nielsen but there is evidence for narrowing even without it. My aggregate’s at 50.8 now.]

    Thanks Kevin.

  6. Actually I hope this is just a rogue and the next Nielsen reports he’s back up to where they were at the previous Nielsen… then they can report a historic increase in popularity after the historic decrease in popularity 😀

  7. Sean

    Historically a new Government enjoys a healthy lead in the early polls.

    Yesterdays poll showing the ALP in front was historic for that reason as it was unusual

  8. On the matter of 2013 preferences I’ve seen an email from the AEC (second-hand) that reckoned they were now on track for Thursday this week.

    On their form guide so far these targets are about as realistic as the timeframes I offer an editor for when I will finish and submit a journal article.

  9. ST,

    I think the only thing seperating you and Bushfire Bill is your inferior command of the English language and keyboards. I recall a (rather longer) thesis to the same affect posted almost everyday by said commenter. I think the simple response to both of you is that newspapers are hardly going to pay for a poll and then ignore it due to some “conspiracy”. They make something out of what they have.

  10. William: answer to your Twitter question: yes. Rounding from these primaries by 2013 prefs can get it to about 51.7 to Coalition.

  11. The Nielsen looks worse than it is because it uses respondent preferences (= skew to Labor) while Newspoll and Essential use 2010 preferences (= skew to Coalition).

  12. I won’t say that I read every word BB posts, Bugler, but comparing him with Sean is OTT. BB asssembles data and argues a case whereas ST simply reiterates slogans.

    Not in the same league.

  13. It is possible that this and the Nielsen poll were at opposite ends of the margin of error (50% +/- 2% if sample size is about 2,000).

  14. All this Rohdes scholarship seems a bit overblown. Nothing of it says Abbott is either going to be or is a good PM. Exceptional academic qualifications may or may not make any difference.

  15. A fascinating political story from Washington_
    Sometimes one sees a speaker on “Lateline” et al attributed to the US “Heritage Foundation ”
    It is a mainline(the largest, conservative Think Tank) with a Budget of $8o million a year and works on a range of political issues to give a conservative viewpoint
    and they have been very successful since they helped elect Reagan
    ..but now enter from right of stage..a small group of dedicated and dogmatic young men all psssionate Tea Party men,and all determined to “take over” the Foundation

    It was they who used a side-group”Heritage Action” to drive the Tea Party men in Congress to confront Obaama over the Budget,et al… the end ..disasterous resuts…the effect is to gut the Heritage Foundation…they sought to confront Repubs who they though not”pure” enough in their ideology…all sounds familiar from many events in the past

    a fasciunating story of ideologues in action inside a major political organisation

    a most interesting tale for those interested in how politics work..from the US journal’New Republic”

  16. It’s worth noting that Rhodes scholarships do not go to the most outstanding academic. Rhodes wanted to encourage the next generation of leaders of the Empire – and set the criteria around what he considered important. Yes, it’s important but only as part of demonstrating a rounded individual. The other dimensions of sporting ability and community works (and general leadership potential as demonstrated by it and the interview process) are just as, if not even more important.

  17. Steve777@32

    It is possible that this and the Nielsen poll were at opposite ends of the margin of error (50% +/- 2% if sample size is about 2,000).

    It’s also their different preferencing methods.

    Nielsen’s using respondent-allocated and getting a 52 for ALP out of something that I estimated at 51.2-51.4 and William estimated at 51.7.

    Newspoll’s using 2010 preferences and getting a 52 for Coalition out of something that’s probably a 51 of some kind.

    The difference between them is probably more like 2.5 points than 4.

    Using other polls I think Newspoll is much closer to the trend. Nielsen probably isn’t outside MOE, but close.

  18. William Bowe@9

    Sean, try not to be such a moron. It doesn’t follow from one result that a pollster is biased. Nielsen has consistently been more favourable to the Coalition than Labor.

    Fighting a losing battle there, William.

  19. From what they’ve said already, and based on the other recent polls, I’d expect the real numbers to be between 50/50 and 51/49 to the Coalition. Given the apparent skew resulting from respondent allocated prefs, it seems Nielsen should be treated more like 49/51 to Labor, which would be statistically consistent with 51/49 to the Coalition.

    So nothing really odd about Nielsen.

  20. zoidlord@39


    Do you or William know anyone from Nielsen could explain the odd bounce to Labor?

    I’m not in touch with them but it looks like they just had a dodgy sample, especially in Queensland. Happens sometimes just by bad luck.

    I’ll be interested to see what Bludgertrack makes of this batch of polls. Bonhamtrack (I really should think of a name for it!) has the Coalition down 1.7 points 2PP since mid last week.

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