Malcolm Turnbull is preferred over Tony Abbott as prime minister by Australians at a rate of two-to-one, according to the latest Fairfax-Nielsen poll.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s low standing and an “unfair” budget would have led to a Labor win had an election been held last week, according to the latest Fairfax-Nielsen poll.

The result would have come despite the coalition closing the gap with a four-point rally in its primary vote.

A mini-recovery has wiped out some of Labor’s lead, the poll published in Fairfax newspapers on Monday shows. However, the ALP is still six points ahead after preferences, 53 per cent to 47 per cent.

The nationwide survey of 1400 voters was taken between last Thursday and Saturday.

Two-thirds of those who took part also said they opposed Australian military involvement to restore order in Iraq compared to 31 per cent in favour.

Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten remains the preferred prime minister for 47 per cent of voters with Mr Abbott languishing on 40 per cent.

The Labor leader enjoys a positive net approval rating of +1 per cent compared to Mr Abbott’s -25 per cent.

Equally worrying for the prime minister is that Malcolm Turnbull is preferred by Australians at a rate of two-to-one given a choice between the pair. Yet the situation is almost reversed among Liberal voters.