October 17, 2014 / 9:34 PM / 3 years ago

Brazil election poll gives Neves wide advantage over Rousseff

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Opposition candidate Aecio Neves would defeat President Dilma Rousseff by almost 13 percentage points in the Oct. 26 runoff to Brazil’s presidential election, according to a poll published on Friday.

Brazil's President and presidential candidate Dilma Rousseff of the Workers Party (PT) holds a star toy during a meeting with educators in Sao Paulo October 15, 2014. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker

The poll was conducted by Sensus, a research institute that is not as closely watched as Brazil’s larger polling firms Ibope and Datafolha, whose polls show Neves and Rousseff in a dead heat.

If the runoff were held today, Neves would win 56.4 percent of the valid votes - which exclude undecided voters, spoiled and blank survey responses - against 43.6 percent for Rousseff, Sensus said.

The previous Sensus poll last week had given Neves an even larger margin of victory of 17.6 percentage points.

Neves, the financial markets’ favorite, gained ground after his stronger-than-expected showing in the first-round vote on Oct. 5, when he bested environmentalist Marina Silva to place second behind Rousseff. But the latest Datafolha and Ibope polls show his support has stopped growing.

Sensus interviewed 2,000 voters between Tuesday and Friday. Its results were posted on the website of weekly news magazine IstoÉ.

Reporting by Anthony Boadle; editing by Gunna Dickson

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