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Nate Silver Badly Wrong AGAIN on UK General Election Forecast - 2015

ElectionOracle / UK General Election May 09, 2015 - 02:12 PM GMT

By: Nadeem_Walayat

ElectionOracle

U.S. Election forecasting guru Nate Silver's forecasting firm http://fivethirtyeight.com, that got the 2015 UK general election just as badly wrong as he the previous 2010, have been busy putting up a smoke screen of excuses as to why they got it wrong once more, as a case of when they get it right claim praise but when wrong blames others such as the opinion polls - Its your methodology stupid!


Nate Silver's original forecast as per BBC Panorama-

  • Conservatives 283
  • Labour 270
  • SNP 48
  • Lib Dems 24
  • UKIP 1

Which several days before I warned would turn out to be badly wrong.

04 May 2015 - Nate Silver UK General Election Forecast 2015 as Wrong as 2010?

The mainstream press has literally gone bananas on Nate Silvers UK election forecast as if he were Moses himself, who just like Ed Milliband on Sunday has descended from the Election Mountain with a prophetic stone tablet.

This despite the fact that Nate Silver's grand finally forecast is of not much difference to what virtually every other pollster has been forecasting for several months now as illustrated by the below table. Which is not so surprising since the pollsters, including Nate Silver all base their forecasts on virtually the same opinion polls so all that Nate Silver stated was for a mundane middle of the road outcome of what most others have already been stating for several months! Which means if he gets it right then so will virtually every other pollster and that ahead of Nate Silver, which certainly is not worth the amount of coverage that it has induced.

And it gets worse, for if the Nate Silver obsessed mainstream press had bothered to do their research then they would soon discover that Nate Silver got the 2010 UK General Election very badly wrong, not by just a handful of seats but that he literally forecast that the Lib Dems would get DOUBLE the seats they eventually did i.e. 113 forecast against 57 actual, as his expectations for the Lib-Dem surge never materialised and conversely the Labour Collapse to 198 never happened instead Labour won 258 seats and thus denied the Conservatives an outright majority.

Therefore the whole Nate Silver UK election forecast mainstream press diatribe is pure hype over substance for it reveals nothing new to what the public were not already aware of. The key problem for forecasters such as Nat Silver is that it is no good just googling about Britain or hop on to a plane for a few days visit to understand Britain, which is why he does not understand UKIP nor SNP nor what is happening in the constituencies because he does NOT KNOW BRITAIN! This illustrates just how STUPID the broadcast media (BBC) and the mainstream press are. They might as well have flown to China and asked a village farmer what the UK election result would be, who I am sure after googling for a few minutes would come out with a very similar forecast to Nate Silver's near average of pollster forecasts.

However, during election night, completely oblivious to what the exit poll was stating he continued to 'fine tune' his forecast so that it got even worse as the night progressed i.e.

Day Before

Conservative 281
Labour 266
SNP 52
Lib-Dems 26

Twitter image

And a couple of hours AFTER the polls closed, AFTER the BBC exit poll -

Conservative 278
Labour 268
SNP 53
Lib-Dems 27

So as the night progressed http://fivethirtyeight.com's forecasts became even worse than where they started! You can read their blog for the whole fiasco of forecasts getting worse despite the actual results pointing in the opposite direction here.

For what actually did prove extremely accurate in forecasting the UK general election 2015 outcome I turn to my analysis of December 2013 that is based on house prices rather than opinion polls, and as later featured in the UK Housing Market ebook (FREE DOWNLOAD) that converted the UK house prices forecast trend trajectory into expectations for an outright Conservative election victory where the only thing to do was to track actual house prices against the forecast trend trajectory to fine tune the expected result on approach to the May 7th election day.

30 Dec 2013 - UK House Prices Forecast 2014 to 2018, Inflation, Trend Trajectory and General Election 2015

UK General Election Forecast 2015

In terms of the 'fixed' May 2015 general election, the implications of 10% per annum house price inflation for another 18 months, that builds on the housing bull market of the previous 12 months and on the embryonic bull market of 2012 are that probability strongly favours an outright Conservative election victory.

The following graph attempts to fine tune the outcome of the next general election by utilising the more conservative current house prices momentum of 8.5% which has many implications for strategies that political parties may be entertaining to skew the election results in their favour.

In conclusion a May 2015 general election at an average house price inflation rate of 8.5% would result in a Conservative overall majority of at least 30 seats. Therefore this is my minimum expectation as I expect UK house prices to start to average 10% per annum from early 2014 with my actual forecast converging towards average UK house prices breaking to a new all time high just prior to the May 2015 general election which would be a significant boost for housing market sentiment and thus the Conservative's election prospects.

The following video of 6th January 2014 (16 months ago) further illustrates my house prices based UK general election forecast:

UK General Election Forecast 2015

My most recent update of 1st of May confirmed my UK house prices based expectations for an outright Conservative election victory on a small single digits majority -

01 May 2015 - UK Election Forecast 2015 - Who Will Win?

The updated election seats trend graph suggests that the Conservatives are on target towards achieving a single digits outright majority which is completely contrary to every opinion poll published this year. Which if it materialises then I am sure for Election 2020 everyone will be staring at the house prices indices rather than the opinion polls. Though as is usually the case that when the consensus becomes focused on an particular indicator then it usually stops working.

With the accompanying video published on 3rd of May that also confirmed that UK house prices were forecasting a single digit outright Conservative election victory, which was contrary to every opinion poll and political pundit:

Therefore my analysis of UK house prices converted into seats by far proved to be the most accurate forecaster for the UK general election 2015 outcome, and since I have a good idea of how house prices will perform over the next 5 years I can tell you with some confidence that the Conservatives are also likely to win the 2020 general election! Though, in the interests of accuracy do come back to my detailed analysis to conclude in a seats forecast that I will probably publish a year or so before the next general election.

Ensure you are subscribed to my always free newsletter for my in-depth analysis and detailed trend forecasts.

Source and Comments: http://www.marketoracle.co.uk/Article50606.html

By Nadeem Walayat

http://www.marketoracle.co.uk

Copyright © 2005-2015 Marketoracle.co.uk (Market Oracle Ltd). All rights reserved.

Nadeem Walayat has over 25 years experience of trading derivatives, portfolio management and analysing the financial markets, including one of few who both anticipated and Beat the 1987 Crash. Nadeem's forward looking analysis focuses on UK inflation, economy, interest rates and housing market. He is the author of five ebook's in the The Inflation Mega-Trend and Stocks Stealth Bull Market series that can be downloaded for Free.

Housing Markets Forecast 2014-2018The Stocks Stealth Bull Market 2013 and Beyond EbookThe Stocks Stealth Bull Market Update 2011 EbookThe Interest Rate Mega-Trend EbookThe Inflation Mega-trend Ebook

Nadeem is the Editor of The Market Oracle, a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication that presents in-depth analysis from over 1000 experienced analysts on a range of views of the probable direction of the financial markets, thus enabling our readers to arrive at an informed opinion on future market direction. http://www.marketoracle.co.uk

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any trading losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors before engaging in any trading activities.

Nadeem Walayat Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


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