EDINBURGH, United Kingdom – The ‘no’ campaign has pulled ahead by 6 points in the independence referendum, after yet another day of dire economic news for Scotland, dubbed “Salmond’s Black Wednesday” by pro-union campaigners.
Voters appear to have been given a fright after businesses began making plans to relocate to England and billions were wiped off the value of Scottish companies following a surge in support for independence.
The Survation survey of 1000 Scots showed 47.6 percent plan to vote ‘no’ with 42.4 percent voting ‘yes’. When undecideds are removed, the result rises to 53 percent for ‘no’ and 47 percent ‘yes’. The ‘no’ campaign have not polled this well for two months.
Over the weekend YouGov put the pro-independence YesScotland slightly ahead for the first time since the start of the campaign. This led to Scottish companies losing £2bn in value on the markets, a fall in the pound and the pensions giant Standard Life began making provisions to move thousands of staff from their base in Scotland to England.
The new poll lead will go some way to allaying the panic that has beset both financial markets and the political class. On Tuesday the ‘no’ campaign appeared to be in disarray and Prime Minister’s Question Time was effectively cancelled so the three main party leaders could come to campaign in Scotland. Nigel Farage is also planning to come in a separate arrangement.
Blair McDougall from Better Together said: “This fight for Scotland’s future will go right down to the wire, but it’s one we will win.
“Alex Salmond wants us to take so many huge risks – over our pound, pensions and NHS. The last few days have shown that these risks are real. Separation would cost jobs and push up costs for families in Scotland. This is too important for a protest vote. There would be no going back.”
Earlier the Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said: “Voters can now be certain that separation will cost jobs, halt investment, and reduce the money we have for public services and the NHS. There is faster, better, more secure change for Scotland on offer with a ‘no’ vote.”
The referendum is on 18th September, with the result expected the following day.