Act election spending figures are used for general election reporting purposes only. For more election statistics, and to see why this election is a special election for which this particular figure is used, see our detailed analysis.
In an ideal world the Conservatives would be expected to hold onto at least some of their share of the Commons. But given that no party is winning an outright majority, the Tories are also expected to lose seats at every stage, regardless of the results.
At the moment their lead seems to be shrinking: for the period from August 11 to August 16 last year, the Tories had 27 per cent of tgospelhitzhe Commons, Labour had 16 per cent, the Lib Dems had 9 per cent and the Greens 7.3 per cent respectively.
Of the 18 constituencies that remain to be assigned to the Conservatives, seven – such as Tuggell and Dann in Essex, and Oldham East and Saddleworth in Yorkshire – are held by Labour and two (Croydon Central in south west London and the Arundel and South Downs constituency in Buckinghamshire) are held by the Liberal Democrats.
However, the Tory leader, David Cameron, who had previously hinted in an interview with the Sunday Times that he was keen on holding the election next year, is now on course to win back all the Conservative seats that he held when he resigned from the Commons, including Bury North, Bexhill and Battle and North Hykeham.
The Conservatives hold an overall 7.3 per cent advantage over Labour in the Commons, with only 7.7 per cent of the vote between them. Their lead is shrinking: the Labour Party is losing 7.4 per cent of the vote to the Conservatives, meaning that the Conservative majority is now 13.8 per cent.
The Lib Dems, on the other hand, are expected to benefit from the decline of Labour to 9 per cent in the Commons. The Tories are already holding the seat of Walsall South, while the Lib Dems are also likely to be hoping to retain Eastleigh, where they were recently defeated at the hands of a Ukip candidate.
What we can see is that the Conservative vote in Britain is in steep decline, having declined sharply since 2010. We would expect this swing to diminish further as the election goes on, so we’ll have to wait for further returns to be available before w