July 5, 2015 / 2:57 PM / 5 years ago

Spain's anti-austerity Podemos tied with mainstream parties - poll

Anti-austerity Podemos (We can) party leader Pablo Iglesias speaks during a news conference in Madrid, Spain, May 28, 2015. REUTERS/Juan Medina

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain’s anti-austerity Podemos is virtually tied with the country’s two mainstream parties less than six months to a parliamentary election with no sign of a front-runner emerging, a poll showed on Sunday.

For the second month in a row, the ruling People’s Party narrowly led the survey carried out by Metroscopia for El Pais newspaper, garnering 23 percent support.

The opposition socialists and Podemos came close second and third in the poll with 22.5 percent and 21.5 percent respectively. Other newcomer, Ciudadanos, is fourth with 15 percent.

This means that at least three parties would be needed to form a parliamentary majority and back a stable government in a country without any tradition of coalition politics.

An alliance between the socialists, Podemos and other leftists Izquierda Unida would total around 48 percent of the vote but Spaniards would prefer a government led by the socialists or the People’s Party and backed by centrist Ciudadanos, the poll also showed.

In a test of the national mood ahead of elections expected in November or December, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s People’s Party suffered heavy losses in local elections in May which saw the socialists regaining some momentum while Podemos and Ciudadanos made considerable headway.

Reporting by Julien Toyer; Editing by Digby Lidstone

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