Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor

A return to the norm after a somewhat surprising result last week from Essential Research, which also finds the Liberal Party perceived as much further to the right than Labor is to the left, and the ABC’s Q&A program to be a lot more popular than Tony Abbott.

After an anomalous drop to 51-49 last week, the Labor two-party lead in the Essential Research rolling average is back to 52-48 this week, from primary votes of 40% for the Coalition (down one), 38% for Labor (up one), 11% for the Greens (up one) and 2% for Palmer United (up one). Further questions find the Liberal Party rated too right wing by 34%, too left wing by 7% and about right by 26%, whereas only 20% think Labor too left wing compared with 16% for too right wing, and 28% about right. The poll also features an occasional question on best party to handle various issues, which finds the Coalition improving from a low point when the question was last asked in February, with the biggest movement in education, health, environment and climate change, generally smaller ones in its economic areas of strength, and no movement on national security and asylum seekers. A question on the ABC’s Q&A program finds is to be considerably more popular than its critics in the government, with 46% rating it good and 11% poor (including 37% and 23% among Coalition voters). After given a precis of the two parties’ National Broadband Network policies, 38% favoured Labor’s and 29% the government’s. On the economy, 35% rate it as headed in the right direction against 41% for the wrong direction, essentially unchanged on May.

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.

794 comments on “Essential Research: 52-48 to Labor”

Comments Page 15 of 16
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  1. I actually think the driver is that China and India are moving up the skilled labour curve without necessarily moving up the consumption curve.

    It means there are plenty of ways to produce things cheaply but no-one to buy them.

    That hollows out middle class incomes in developed economies and doesn’t replace them with demand from developing economies.

    That, and a bit of demographic change thrown in to the equation.

    There’s also the change in approach to saving. Since hte GFC savings rates have increased and even low rates are not inducing the same “borrow and spend” behaviour they used to because most household are saying that, not at any price, will I increase my leverage.

  2. Now I’m going to help charm the voters of Canning on behalf of the Labor candidate.

    I will let them know that TBA and the LNP are sorry about the poor economy…sorry they’ve busted it.

  3. [Low growth and fairly high unemployment numbers mean interest cuts which will give the Government a bit of a boost.]
    How bad is that when high unemployment and a stagnant economy is a “boost” for the government ? Max. 😆

  4. “wasn’t Bob Hawke doing some lobbying or some such for Chinese firms a few years back ”

    Former prime minister Bob Hawke lobbied Colin Barnett to allow a Chinese company to buy a large package of land in the Ord River.

    Simple find on google & there are lots more, I didn’t even try Hawke + Burma Lobby..

    Never stand between an old goat politician and a lobbying position.
    Money wins over principle EVERY time

    [Popular Premiers Mike Baird & Daniel Andrews have large leads in NSW & Victoria while other States except Tasmania are close
    September 02 2015

    The L-NP leads strongly in NSW: L-NP 57% cf. ALP 43% and the ALP holds the same large lead in Victoria: ALP 57% cf. L-NP 43% on two-party preferred bases in late August, according to this month’s SMS Morgan Poll on State voting intention.

    State voting intention was conducted in late August with a representative cross-section of 5,079 Australian electors.]

  6. TBA is right that more rate cuts are priced.

    One late this year and another half of one early next year.

    The only problem is that the RBA is getting very nervous about the zero lower bound and not cutting as often as they used to. They’ll need a serious slowing in growth to cut further from here.

  7. The GDP figures although disappointing are really telling the story up until June 30.

    My feeling is that things have picked up since July 1 and now as we enter in to the third month of this quarter that the economy is on the improve.

    I believe this is related to the drop in the Australian dollar down to 70c making our exports cheaper and more marketable. The price of petrol below $40 a barrel which is impacting at the pump. (I filled up for less than $70 the other day which is a considerable drop in recent times. The equivalent of a 0.25% drop in interest rates imho). Anyone owning a house in Melbourne or Sydney has seen their net worth increase by $50-100k this year which always puts a smile on the punters faces.

    This change in mood is reflected in consumer confidence which has moved up to around 100 meaning the pessimists and optimists are now in equal proportions with the trend to positivity.

    The US is still expected to move interest rates upwards in the very near future which removes downward pressure on our rates.

    The China market crash is not taken overly seriously by the real world because it is fixed and controlled and doesn’t operate like other stock market.

    China is a short term problem because of over hang. It is expected to clear by early to mid 2016 and to resume business as normal thereafter.

    Back home, Hockey was right in saying the economy is resilient. While not predicting a boom, I reckon we are on the up.

  8. Interest rates heading down – win or lose for the government?

    List of winners if rates go lower:
    * mortgage holders (mortgage rates down)
    * property investors (property values up)

    List of people who are probably losing if economic circumstances indicate rates need to go lower:
    * some retirees with large portion of wealth in cash holdings (reliance for their income)
    * the unemployed (high levels – reason for rates going lower in the first place)
    * people needing to change jobs (next job may not get the bonuses and remuneration of the previous job because of suppressed wage growth)
    * people wanting to enter the property market (as lower rates equal higher prices)

    I would say there are more in the former category than the latter if only because there are so many Australian’s with mortgages than are saving hundreds of thousands of dollars off their mortgages whilst seeing their person wealth balloon with increasing house prices.

    Basically – already have significant wealth and a good secure job, lower rates are probably to your benefit. Unemployed, wanting to change careers, wanting to enter the property market or stayed away from the casino of property and shares and kept your life savings in cash? You are screwed by the current state of the economy.

    Unfortunately for me more of the latter category relate to me than the former (although I have a job).

  9. Growler

    I agree with you except for one thing. The growing regulation of banks and lending was one reason why domestic construction was weaker than anticipated in Q2. That only accelerated into Q3. And building new homes is a big part of Australia’s economy.

    Particularly when you include the extra furnishings people buy after they’ve bought a new home.

  10. Maybe TBA can print this graphic & stick it on his wall….

    Australia sitting on the bottom of the + table only just in front of -ve Canada, Japan & Brazil.

  11. sceptic

    Yes a bit LMGTFY (let me Google that for you) . He is also pushing for nuclear waste storage in the NT and has been doing so for a few years. That lobbying business must pay well.

  12. Boerwar
    Posted Wednesday, September 2, 2015 at 6:45 pm | PERMALINK
    Australian thrashed by Greece!

    How humiliatement.

    Let’s swap Abbott for Tsipras!!!!!!

    Let’s throw in Bill Shorten to sweeten the deal !!!!

  13. The worst of it probably is that if we cut rates in the short-term to boost the economy now and the lower rates simply flow on to higher asset prices (and not productive use) as has been the reality to date then we may actually be doing more long-term damage to our economy.

    At the time of the GFC I thought that rates needed to go much lower much quicker and then have gone up much quicker afterwards (and stayed up) with extra stimulus provided by government policy in the current period rather than being left to the Reserve bank.

    Basically the opposite of what was done, in the first instance we should have pulled the rates lever instead of government policy (and would have avoided a lot of the debt) and in the current situation should be leaving rates up and have the government do the lifting. It is a shame we put so much stock in the reserve bank being “independent”.

    If the above was done property and asset prices would have stayed much flatter for the period rather than tanking and ballooning in equal measure.

  14. It is of course chaos in financial markets and market reversals that benefit the very rich more than anything else. How did the Rothschild’s make their billions again?

  15. LGH
    I thought that one of the problems and surprises that the reserve bank has faced is that the interest rate cut is not having as much impact as desired or expected. In other words the stimulation effect is very muted.

    Australia recovered faster than the US which went down the interest rate route.

    The thing is that as a smaller share of the population buy houses, the impact rate has less impact. Larger businesses borrow overseas anyway so the Aussie interest rate is less of an issue. For medium businesses this is very much a shrinking sector of the market, squeezed out by the big boys, so again interest rate changes have a muted impact. Any sensible small business will be keeping borrowing to a minimum so again interest rates changes may have a lesser impact than expected.

    The other factor is credit card rates which rarely move in line with interest rate cuts.

  16. Rates Analyst,


    The regulators attempts to safeguard us against the 2008 GFC have had no noticeable impact on the relentless pursuit and growth in the real estate market.

    Winning the last war is not meaningful to today’s market place.

  17. One thing I will say about capital requirements, when I studied the subject, and thought about the history of banking crisis, I came to the conclusion that on their own increasing the risk weighting and capital levels would not prevent the next GFC.

    Most banking crisis are caused by a large scale property crash, whilst the increasing capital may help cushion some increase in bad loans, in time of full scale property crash the capital requirements may actually add to the problem as the bank will be forced to call in good loans or shut down other lending to cover the losses coming from the loan book

  18. L G H

    In hindsight, I think the central banks should have cut rates aggressively and governments should have provided stimulus and then instead of using the printers to support asset prices, that money could have been directed more at the real economy.

    This would have given the government scope to undertake a proper review of spending and tackle debt whilst the central bank kept the bottom half of the economy active which in turn would have supported small to medium size business.

  19. [The Abbott government is close to releasing a shortlist of possible sites to host a nuclear waste dump, but has missed a self-imposed August deadline.
    At least four locations — two in South Australia’s Kimba shire, one in Leonora in Western Australia and one in Yalgoo, WA — are among those in the running to be on the shortlist of sites that will host the “national radioactive waste management facility”, though a final decision on the location is not due until 2017.
    The delay in the release of the list has prompted suggestions from Labor of a link with the Canning byelection on September 19]

    Read more:
    Follow us: @smh on Twitter | sydneymorningherald on Facebook

  20. [Bingo, Cormann blamed Labor for the low growth in his first sentence while being interviewed by Leigh Sales.]

    You call that an interview? Fireside chat more like….

  21. Ex pollies commenting on anything

    The first question every journalist should ask

    ” Are you a paid lobbyist , are you receiving any fee or gratuity from any 1st, 2nd or 3rd party involved or benefiting in any way from your support of _____________ ( insert issue being sprooked )

  22. Financial markets are a vast casino corrupting the real economy. Driven alternately by fear and greed in ever decreasing cycles, now weekly or shorter, it can’t be too far from falling into a black hole, pulling in the real economy in with it.

    Isn’t there some way we can decouple the casino from thr real economy?

  23. OC

    [The rumour is they are using deep sedation without protecting the airway.
    Surely they will be shutdown now.]

    I’d be surprised if that was the case. I gather they have proper, fully-trained anaesthetists but I can’t tell for sure. They should be able to manage an airway properly.

    My guess is they are doing breast augmentations under sedation and they are struggling to keep the patient comfortable and injecting too much local into the intercostal muscles which is rapidly absorbed.

    It’s much easier to do a GA.

  24. Steve777

    Some of it can behave like a casino but generally it has an important role to play.

    Bringing together the users of funds and the savers of funds and providing for everyday activities.

  25. TBA at 687

    “Low growth and fairly high unemployment numbers mean interest cuts which will give the Government a bit of a boost.”

    That’s the worst piece of economic analysis I’ve ever heard. Using that definition, the lower the interest rates the better, just like Japan, Europe & the USA for the past several years, excellent.

  26. Mathias calls previous gov “Anti-growth policies”.

    abc730 ‏@abc730 23m23 minutes ago

    The Australian economy continues to grow: Mathias Cormann. #abc730 #auspol

    This is the new attack run from the Libs.

  27. [ Diogenes
    Posted Wednesday, September 2, 2015 at 5:48 pm | PERMALINK
    You can add the QLD Premier to that list as well now. I think it is going to get really hard for Federal Labor to hold the line on this issue.

    What is in it for the State Labor people but not the Feds? It must be more money somehow. ]

    Watching ABC TV News in Sydney the position of ths Labor State leaders is straight forward.

    They said they supported *a* FTA, quite different from saying they supported what abbott & robb want to do. Very different.

    Shorten also shown stating the State Labor people support his position.

    Nice try by the tories and media, but they have tried telling porkies – even the ABC tonight was clearer *a* FTA as distinct from that proposed.

  28. Fairfax… perhaps in satire of how biased the organisation is against the Government… keeps us up to date with the cutting issues of the day.–again-20150812-gixsju.html

    Hopefully they can keep us updated hourly on Abbott’s eating habits

  29. Another one for TBA ..

    Had it not been for a surprise 41 per cent jump in government spending on defence equipment in the quarter, economic growth would have been zero. The Bureau of Statistics said the jump in defence spending was responsible for all of the 0.2 percentage points of economic growth.

    Read more:
    Follow us: @smh on Twitter | sydneymorningherald on Facebook

    Abbott & Joe will spend big on uniforms , arms, anti riot tanks for another 6000 BoarderFarce troopers, avoiding dip in next quarters GDP

  30. [A Brisbane-based energy company has flagged the possibility of building a manufacturing plant in Adelaide, which will produce battery storage units for solar energy.

    AllGrid has expanded into Adelaide, launching a new battery storage system that allows households to store up to 10 kilowatt hours of power from their solar panels, which equates to just under half an average household’s daily use.

    Currently, excess electricity generated from solar panels on people’s homes is fed back into the grid.]

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