GhostWhoVotes reports (though James J in comments had the numbers 45 minutes earlier) that Newspoll has the two-party preferred vote at 54-46, compared with 55-45 a fortnight ago and 59-41 the fortnight before. The primary votes are 32% for Labor (up two on last time), 46% for the Coalition (up one) and 12% for the Greens (steady). Julia Gillard’s approval rating is up three to 30% and her disapproval down three to 60%, while Tony Abbott is respectively down three and up four to 31% and 60%. Julia Gillard leads as preferred prime minister 40-37, reversing Abbott’s 40-36 lead last time.

Today’s Essential Research was less encouraging for Labor: it had them losing one of the points on two-party preferred which were clawed back over previous weeks, the result now at 57-43. Primary votes were 50% for the Coalition (up one), 33% for Labor (steady) and 10% for the Greens (steady). Other questions gauged views on the parties’ respective “attributes”, with all negative responses for Labor (chiefly “divided” and “will promise anything to win votes”) rating higher than all positives. The Liberal Party did rather better, rating well for “moderate” and “understands the problems facing Australia”. Bewilderingly, only slightly more respondents (35%) were willing to rate the state of the economy as “good” than “bad” (29%), with 33% opting for neither, although 43% rated the position of their household satisfactory against 28% unsatisfactory.

UPDATE (29/5/12): Morgan have broken the habit of a lifetime by publishing their weekend face-to-face poll results on a Tuesday, never having been known in the past to do it earlier than Thursday. My best guess is that they wished to offer a riposte to Newspoll’s relatively encouraging figures for Labor – “today’s Newspoll showing a swing to the ALP is simply unbelievable”, says Gary Morgan in the accompanying release – with their own results, which show Labor support at an all time low on every measure. The poll has Labor’s primary vote down 4.5% on the previous week to 27.5%, the Coalition up 3.5% to 49% and the Greens up 2.5% to 13%. This translates into 61.5-38.5 on respondent-allocated preferences and 58-42 on preferences as they flowed at the previous election.