Results of a new national poll carried out by NBC News were announced. The poll asked respondents for whom they will vote: Democrat Hillary Clinton or Republican Donald Trump.
NBC News poll results
Of those who answered the question, 50.0% said that they intend to vote for former First Lady Hillary Clinton, whereas 42.0% said that they would give their vote to real estate developer Donald Trump.
This poll was conducted from August 15 to August 21, among a random sample of 1745 participants. There is a sampling error of +/-1.1 percentage points. Considering this error margin, the race is currently a statistical tie.
Putting the results in context
As any other method, polls are subject to bias. Hence, one should not be overly confident the results of an individual poll. At the very least, one should examine how a poll's results compare to benchmark forecasts.
For the following comparison, we translate Clinton's and Trump's raw poll numbers into two-party vote shares. This yields figures of 54.4% for Clinton and 45.7% for Trump.
Results in comparison to other polls
If we look at an average of polls, Clinton's current two-party vote share is at 53.3%. This value is 1.1 percentage points lower than corresponding numbers in the NBC News poll. This difference is within the poll's error margin, which means that the poll is not an outlier.
Comparison to the combined PollyVote
The most recent PollyVote predicts Clinton to gain 53.7% of the two-party vote. This means that the combined PollyVote is 0.7 points below polling numbers. The PollyVote forecast is therefore in line with the poll's margin of error.