Opinium/Observer poll finds younger voters favour Labour on the economy, but, overall, the Conservatives lead on the issue
Theresa May and Philip Hammond remain a more trusted team on the economy than their Labour counterparts, according to the latest Opinium/Observer poll.
Despite a mixed view on the state of the economy, the prime minister and her chancellor are still out in front, with 36% of respondents trusting them the most, while 28% have more trust in Jeremy Corbyn and the shadow chancellor, John McDonnell.
The poll shows that Labour retains its narrow two-point lead over the Conservatives in terms of overall vote share, on 42%. Neither party has made any ground since the autumn party conference season. The Lib Dems are up by one point at six, and Ukip remains at five.
The survey comes a week after Tony Blair accused Labour of failing to take advantage of the turmoil engulfing the Tory party, telling BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We should be 15, 20 points ahead at this stage.”
The results also reveal an age split between who is seen as most trusted to handle the economy. Younger voters aged 18-34 are far more likely to trust Labour, with 35% favouring Corbyn and McDonnell in comparison to 28% who prefer May and Hammond. This trend continues for all those up to age 44, but flips round beyond that. Among over-65s, only 16% favour Corbyn and McDonnell, while 52% trust May and Hammond.
Both of the main party leaders have seen a slight increase in their approval ratings since conference season, with May’s net rating climbing up 4 points to -13% and Corbyn from -5% to -3%.
Views on the state of the economy are varied, with 29% thinking the economy is in a good state and 34% thinking it is in a bad state. Those who voted to leave in the EU referendum are almost twice as likely to think the economy is in a good state as those who voted to remain.
Boris Johnson’s approval ratings have plummeted since September, with more people now regarding him as a bad foreign secretary. The fall comes after he refused to apologise for his remarks about removing dead bodies in Syria and his incorrect comment that Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a British-Iranian woman currently being held in an Iranian jail, had been “teaching people journalism” in Tehran. Her family and employer have always said she was on holiday at the time she was arrested.
While a fifth view Johnson as being good in the post, half of UK adults now think he has been a bad foreign secretary. This marks a drastic change since September, when 29% thought he had been a good foreign secretary and only 33% thought he had been a bad one.
His reputation also suffered among Conservative voters, with a third now thinking Johnson is doing a bad job, up from 16% in September.
Opinium polled 2,032 adults online between 14 and 16 November. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria. Full data tables and results are available here.