Results of a new national poll conducted by LA Times were published. The poll asked respondents for whom they will vote: Democrat Hillary Clinton or Republican Donald Trump.
LA Times poll results
Of those who responded, 41.0% said that they plan to vote for former First Lady Hillary Clinton, whereas 48.0% said that they would give their vote to real estate developer Donald Trump.
The poll was conducted from September 11 to September 17. A total of 2507 respondents responded. There is a sampling error of +/-4.5 percentage points. Considering this error margin, the race is currently a statistical tie.
Putting the results in context
In general, however, don't have too much faith in the results of single polls, since they can incorporate large errors. At the very least, one should check how a poll's results compare to benchmark forecasts.
For the following comparison, we convert the candidates' raw poll numbers into shares of the two-party vote. This yields figures of 46.1% for Clinton and 53.9% for Trump. To compare: 51.7% was obtained by Clinton in the LA Times poll on September 2, for Trump this result was only 0.0%.
Results in comparison to other polls
Trump is currently at 49.0% of the major two-party vote in an average of recent polls. Compared to numbers in the LA Times poll Trump's poll average is 4.9 percentage points worse. This margin is outside the poll's error margin, which means that the poll is an outlier.
Results compared to the combined PollyVote prediction
The most recent PollyVote foresees Trump to gain 47.0% of the two-party vote. Hence, Polly's combined forecast is 6.9 points below polling numbers. The PollyVote forecast is thus outside the poll's margin of error.