Results of a new national poll carried out by LA Times were circulated. The poll asked respondents for whom they will vote: Republican Donald Trump or Democrat Hillary Clinton.
LA Times poll results
The poll was carried out from August 17 to August 23 with 2396 participants. If one accounts for the poll's sampling error of +/-2.0 percentage points, the results reflect a statistical tie.
Putting the results in context
As a general rule, however, you should not have too much faith in the results of single polls, since they often contain large errors. At the very least, one should examine how a poll's results compare to benchmark forecasts.
In order to make the results comparable to benchmark forecasts, one can translate them into shares of the two-party vote. This procedure yields figures of 51.1% for Clinton and 48.9% for Trump.
Results compared to other polls
Looking at an average of polls, Clinton's current two-party vote share is at 53.0%. This value is 1.9 percentage points higher than corresponding numbers in the LA Times poll. This difference is within the poll's sampling error, which means that the poll is not an outlier.
Results compared to the combined PollyVote forecast
The most recent PollyVote expects Clinton to gain 53.5% of the two-party vote. This means that the PollyVote forecast is 2.4 points above polling numbers. Again, a look at the poll's sampling error suggests that this deviation is significant.