Far-right leader Marine Le Pen is holding on to her lead in the first round of the French presidential elections, according to a new poll.
The Front National head had between 25 and 26 per cent support compared with presidential favourite François Fillion, who received between 23 and 25 per cent, according to an Ipsos Sopra Steria poll for the respected French newspaper, Le Monde and the Cevipof research centre.
Mr Fillon is still expected to beat the far-right leader in a second round runoff in May.
But the former Republican Prime Minister has lost up to four points in the first polls of the year.
Wavering support for the established candidates can only be good news for Ms Le Pen, who will be hoping to defy the odds in her performance in the second round.
As the Parti Socialiste have yet to choose a candidate, some experts have suggested this could be skewing the polls in Ms Le Pen’s favour.
“Two polls showing Marine Le Pen in the lead mean it is looking a little more likely she will do well, but the main thing to consider is the public still know her much better than her likely two competitors, in particular they don't know who the Parti Socialiste competitor will be at all,”