Latest poll results issued by TNS UK and its Scottish Opinion Monitor

EDINBURGH – 25th March 2014 – Scottish opinion on independence has barely changed since early February, according to a new survey.

A new poll by TNS among a representative sample of 1,019 adults aged over 16 in Scotland has found that 28% intend to vote Yes in the September 18th poll (29% a month ago) with the No vote unchanged at 42%.

TNS has been polling on a monthly basis since last September and there has been little change in either figure during the last six months.

“It would appear that there is now a settled group of voters who have more or less made up their minds to vote either Yes or No,” said Tom Costley, Head of TNS in Scotland. “Despite the best efforts of the two campaigns, there continues to be a significant number of people in the ‘don’t know’ category”.

Since this latest poll was carried out, there has been a considerable amount of media coverage of issues related to the referendum – the three main unionist parties have dismissed the Scottish Government’s favoured post-independence option of a currency union, there have been reports that major Scottish companies, especially in the financial sector, might relocate to England in the event of a Yes vote and the President of the European Commission has said that an independent Scotland would have to apply for EU membership.

The economy remains the main referendum issue for Scottish voters, with 16% saying it is their top concern, followed by employment/job prospects (11%), healthcare (10%), pensions/benefits (7%) education (7%) and relations with the rest of the UK (7%).

Interestingly currency, which has been the focus of so much recent campaigning, is the main concern for only 5% of voters, although this has increased from 2% in January. Among those in the professional, managerial and non-manual occupations (ABC1s) it has risen from 1% to 8%.

Fewer women than men cite the economy as their main concern (14% against 18%), though it is still the top issue for both groups. Employment/job prospects scores similarly between the sexes (12% of women and 11% of men) but women are more likely to focus on healthcare (13% vs 6%).

Scottish Opinion Infographic Mar 2014

Notes to editors:

1. A sample of 1,019 adults aged 16+ was interviewed in 71 constituencies of the Scottish Parliament over the period 26th February to 9th March 2014

2. To ensure the sample was representative of the adult population of Scotland, it was weighted to match population profile estimates in the analysis. Data was also weighted to match turnout and share of constituency vote from the 2011 Holyrood election, as recorded in SPICe Briefing 11-29 2011 Scottish Parliament Election Results

3. Respondents were asked: ‘There will be a referendum on Scottish Independence on the 18th of September 2014. How do you intend to vote in response to the question: Should Scotland be an independent country? Yes, No, Don’t know’

4. All interviews were conducted face-to-face, in-home using CAPI (Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing) and quota sampling

Detailed tables for this survey can be found here.

About TNS

TNS UK advises clients on specific growth strategies around new market entry, innovation, brand switching and stakeholder management, based on long-established expertise and market-leading solutions. With a presence in over 80 countries, TNS has more conversations with the world’s consumers than anyone else and understands individual human behaviours and attitudes across every cultural, economic and political region of the world. TNS is part of Kantar, one of the world’s largest insight, information and consultancy groups. Please visit www.tnsglobal.com/uk for more information.

TNS UK was awarded the Market Research Society’s (MRS) Agency of the Year 2013.

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