LA Times released the results of a new national poll, in which respondents were asked for whom they will vote: Republican Donald Trump or Democrat Hillary Clinton.
LA Times poll results
Of those who answered the question, 42.0% said that they would vote for former New York Senator Hillary Clinton, whereas 45.0% said that they would give their vote to billionaire Donald Trump.
The poll was conducted from August 23 to August 29 with 2500 respondents. If one takes into account the poll's sampling error of +/-4.5 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, because they may incorporate large errors. At least, one should examine how a poll's results compare to benchmark forecasts.
For the following comparison, we translate Trump's and Clinton's raw poll numbers into two-party vote shares. The resulting figures are 48.3% for Clinton and 51.7% for Trump.
Comparison to other polls
Looking at an average of polls, Trump's current two-party vote share is at 46.8%. This value is 4.9 percentage points lower than respective numbers in the LA Times poll. This margin is outside the poll's sampling error, which suggests that the poll is an outlier.
Results compared to the combined PollyVote forecast
The most recent PollyVote forecasts Trump to gain 46.4% of the two-party vote. Hence, the PollyVote is 5.3 points below polling numbers. The PollyVote forecast is thus outside the poll's sampling error.