Labour leader Jacinda Ardern appears to have hit a speed bump in the latest Newshub Reid Research poll as National’s Bill English claws back ground to get up to 47%.
The poll, released last night, had National up four points from a week ago to 47.3% while Labour was down slightly on 37.8%.
It is a stark contrast from the 1News Colmar Brunton poll last Thursday night which had Labour steady on 43% from the week before, while National had slipped to four points behind on 39.
The poll was bad news for the Green Party which has slipped below the vital 5% threshold on 4.9% - just too low to return to Parliament if the election night result was the same.
The contrast with the 1News Colmar Brunton poll shows just how volatile the polling is - both leaders are expecting a tight race.
On the Newshub results, National would be able to govern alone - the Green Party’s vote would not be counted.
Last week, Mr English predicted the ‘‘stardust’’ around Ms Ardern would soon abate as voters began to look at policies.
Mr English had also climbed further as preferred prime minister rankings - up to 33% from 30%. Ms Ardern had inched up as preferred PM, from 29.9 to 31.7%.
Ms Ardern has spent much of the last week trying to bat off Mr English's attacks on ''back pocket issues'' and Labour's ''vague'' policies on tax.
Ms Ardern said last night it was clear that it was going to be a close race.
Mr English said last night the poll results had National a bit higher than its own polling.
The last Newshub poll in early September had National still ahead but starting to slip on 43.3% while Labour was up to 39.4%.
He had moved up to 30.1% as preferred PMr but Ms Ardern was almost even on 29.9%.
Both NZ First and the Green Party had dropped further to 6.6% and 6.1% as the squeeze from the contest between the two big parties took effect.
Early voting began on Monday, adding extra urgency to the campaigns of both National and Labour.
Ms Ardern was quick to get at least one vote in the bag, casting her own in Mt Albert yesterday and encouraging others to do the same.
Both leaders have been saying they believe the election will be a close-run thing as the poll gap closed.
Last night's poll follows a concerted attack by National over the lack of clarity in Labour's tax policy.
That led to Ms Ardern ruling out changes in income taxes and ruling out inheritance tax. She is sticking to her position not to decide on tax changes until after a tax working group is formed if she forms a government.
There was also controversy over National Finance spokesman Steven Joyce's attempt to discredit Labour's fiscal plan by claiming an $11.7 billion hole in it.
The Newshub Reid Research poll surveyed 1000 voters, 750 by telephone and 250 by internet panel. It has a margin of error of +/- 3.1%.