Google poll: Labour close the gap with Tories
Labour appears to be closing the gap with the Conservatives, according to the latest research of search terms during the election campaign.
The Mavens of London research, which was originally reported by Politics.co.uk, combines traditional polling data with information about people's online searches for their local candidates to come up with predictions of the election result.
It found a spike in searches for Labour candidates since March, tightening an already close race in the run-up to May 7th.
The Tories are forecast to win 289 seats, down 14 on the researchers' March results, while Labour are forecast to win 268 seats, up 12 on the March results.
Tory hopes of a coalition to get them over the finish line will also be hit by a decline in the Lib Dem results, with the party projected to be down five seats to just 14. That would leave a Lib-Con coalition still well short of a majority.
The research forecast that the SNP would get 53 seats, which together with Labour's 268 would leave the two parties just short of the 323 votes needed to lock-out a Conservative government. However, Ed Miliband would easily be able to find other smaller parties willing to vote down a David Cameron Queen's Speech in this scenario.
The research suggests Ukip will only secure two seats – the same number they currently hold.
The Mavens research is based on the hypothesis that online searches, for example of local candidates, are a strong indicator of voting intention.
The findings of the research method are broadly in line with polling data from more traditional methods.