Eleven nationwide opinion polls were published in Norway in March, along with a dozen county-level surveys. Three of the national polls came from Norstat (two for Vart Land and one for NRK), while InFact, unusually, produced work for the Centre Party as well as for regular client the VG newspaper.
The key theme of the month was the continued advance of the Centre Party (SP), improving its average score by 1.8 percentage points after a two-point improvement in February. A landmark was reached in the final poll of the month, Ipsos MMI on 31 March, when the Centre overtook the populist Progress Party (FRP) for the first time and moved into third place. Whether this proves to be an outlier or the foretaste of a new pattern remains to be seen: Progress slipped with nearly every pollster in March, conceding 1.4 points on the average measure.
Conservatives Hoyre, who lead the current four-party coalition government, continued to enjoy rock solid support during March. Their Labour opponents (AP) lost ground slightly, notably falling below 30 per cent support for the first time in 2017 in Opinion Perduco’s 16 March poll. Labour is still above its baseline score from the 2013 General Election of 30.8 per cent: but considering the party averaged 35.5 per cent in January’s polls, the trend is clearly against it.
The wide range of scores achieved by the leading four parties is worth noting: between five and six points separate their high and low scores during the month.
Among the smaller parties there is little movement. Both the junior coalition partners, the Christian People’s Party (KRF) and the Liberals (Venstre) see minimal change in their averages. Both remain below their existing parliamentary baselines.
STORTING VOTING INTENTIONS
Average monthly score, per cent (change on February in brackets):
Labour Party (AP) 32.5 (-0.6) range 29.5 to 35.6
Conservatives (Hoyre) * 23.3 (-0.1) range 20.1 to 26.3
Progress Party (FRP) * 12.6 (-1.4) range 10.6 to 15.8
Centre Party (SP) 11.6 (+1.8) range 8.9 to 14.3
Christian People’s Party (KRF) * 5.0 (+0.1) range 4.2 to 5.4
Socialist Left Party (SV) 4.4 (+0.3) range 3.4 to 5.4
Liberals (Venstre) * 3.9 (-0.1) range 3.3 to 5.1
Greens (MDG) 2.7 (-0.1) range 2.1 to 3.6
Red Party (Rodt) 2.4 (+0.3) range 1.5 to 3.2
Others 1.6 (-0.1) range 0.0 to 2.5
* denotes party in coalition government
Pollsters and media partners: InFact (VG and Senterpartiet), Ipsos MMI (Dagbladet), Kantar TNS (TV2), Norfakta (Nationen og Klassekampen), Norstat (NRK and two polls for Vart Land), Opinion Perduco (Avisenes Nyhetsbyra), Respons Analyse (Aftenposten), Sentio (Dagens Naeringsliv).
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