LA Times published the results of a new national poll. In this poll, interviewees were asked for whom they will vote: Democrat Hillary Clinton or Republican Donald Trump.
LA Times poll results
According to the results, the two candidates can draw on identical levels of support, each with 45.0% of the vote.
The poll was carried out between October 20 and October 26. The sample size was 3208 participants. 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
As any other method, polls are subject to bias. Thus, as a general rule, don't be overly confident the results of an individual poll. Instead of relying on results from single polls, the recommended strategy use combined polls or, even better, a combined forecast that draws upon forecasts from different methods, each of which draws upon different data.
In order to make the results comparable to benchmark forecasts, we translate them into two-party vote shares. The results of the actual poll mean 50.0 % for Clinton and 50.0 % for Trump concerning the two-party vote share. On October 25 Clinton received only 49.4% in the LA Times poll and Trump received 50.6%.
Comparison to other polls
An average of recent polls has Clinton at 53.4% of the two-party vote. When compared to the average forecast of other polls Clinton performed 3.4 percentage points worse in the poll. This margin is outside the poll's error margin, which means that the poll is an outlier.
Comparison to the combined PollyVote
The most recent PollyVote predicts Clinton to gain 54.0% and Trump 46.0% of the two-party vote. Clinton has 4 percentage points less when the results of the poll are compared to the combined PollyVote forecast. Again, a look at the poll's error margin indicates that this deviation is significant.