02 June, 2017
The seat-by-seat prediction by YouGov for The Times suggests that the Conservatives are on course to win 310 seats at the election - short of an absolute majority of 326 seats needed to form a Government.
With just one week to go before the snap election, May gave the speech on Teesside in an attempt to persuade the public that she was the best person to lead the country into exit negotiations, and that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was not up to the task.
An ICM poll for the Guardian showed May with a 12-point lead - enough for a big majority of around 100 but down two points from last week and a far cry from the record 22-point lead earlier this month.
YouGov used a complicated method to work out its latest figures, not based on a single poll, but on the responses of 50,000 people who have taken part in other YouGov polls.
A hastily-arranged General Election in the United Kingdom - that was seen as a foregone conclusion - has suddenly sprung into life with polls tightening and some market analysts speaking about outcomes that would have been inconceivable just weeks ago.
Failure to win the June 8 election with a large majority would weaken May just as formal Brexit talks are due to begin while the loss of her majority in parliament would pitch British politics into turmoil.
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Britain's currency dipped against the euro and United States dollar in morning trading to 1.1438 and 1.286 respectively, as polls point to differing support for the Tories from the June 8 vote. The projection, which uses data about each constituency to predict how voting intention would translate into seats, suggested that the Conservatives could lose 20 seats while Labour could gain nearly 30.
But by the end of the day, it was trading 0.4 per cent up at a little above $1.29, although it was still marginally down against the euro.
Experts said the outcome has become harder to predict but that markets are still expecting a Tory win.
A new Survation poll for ITV television put Labor up three points in a week on 37 percent, while the Conservatives were unchanged on 43 percent.
"The prime minister seems to have difficulties in meeting anyone or having a debate", Corbyn said.
"I believe leaders should walk the walk and be prepared to defend their policies", Leanne Wood, leader of Welsh nationalist party Plaid Cymru, said in another jab at May.
At a campaign rally in southwest England, May denied she was running scared. But instead the headlines have been dominated by her U-turn on the so-called "dementia tax", Jeremy Corbyn's well-honed skills on the campaign trail and awkward questions over the current funding available to the NHS and schools.