Election 2017 polls latest: YouGov explains shock hung parliament prediction

Pollsters' latest figures the first to show Theresa May's majority shrinking

Jon Sharman
Wednesday 31 May 2017 14:44
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Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn at a General Election rally at the Old Fruitmarket, Candleriggs, Glasgow
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn at a General Election rally at the Old Fruitmarket, Candleriggs, Glasgow

YouGov has outlined how its reached its shock prediction of a hung parliament at the general election.

The company's latest figures for The Times suggest the Conservatives may win just 310 seats, 16 short of an absolute majority and 21 fewer than secured by David Cameron in 2015.

While its own polling and others' have shown Labour creeping up on the Tories for some time, YouGov's numbers released on Wednesday morning were the first to show Theresa May's majority shrinking.

General Election polls and projections: May 31

YouGov assessed the intentions of every type of voter and gathered information on how they voted in the EU referendum, their age, where they live and their social backgrounds, through 50,000 interviews over the course of a week.

It then used data from the Office of National Statistics, the British Election study and past election results and estimated the number of each type of voter in each constituency. It combined model probabilities and estimated census counts to reach seat-by-seat predictions.

However, YouGov admitted there was significant potential for "churn" closer to polling day, with a wide margin for error in its results. The Tories could win just 274 seats on a bad day, according to the model, or up to 345.

Its chief executive, Stephan Shakespeare, told The Times: "The data suggests that there is churn on all fronts, with the Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats likely to both lose and gain seats.

"Based on the model's current estimates, some seats are likely to change hands along EU referendum dividing lines."

YouGov has controversially predicted a hung parliament

YouGov's results, pictured above in an infographic created for The Independent by statistics agency Statista, are at odds with a ComRes poll for The Independent at the weekend.

That survey suggested the Tories were 12 points ahead despite growing support for Jeremy Corbyn over social care.

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