BRASILIA (Reuters) - Former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's lead over incumbent Jair Bolsonaro has narrowed to 7 percentage points ahead of the October election, according to a new poll published on Monday.
The leftist leader has the support of 41% of voters against 34% for his far-right adversary, compared to 44% and 31% respectively last month, the BTG/FSB telephone poll said.
Lula's lead has dropped steadily to 7 points from 13 last month and 14 in May, the poll said.
Other polls show Lula's strong lead slipping but maintaining a double-digit advantage: Datafolha saw his advantage at 18-points and a Genial/Quaest poll last week said his lead had fallen to 12 points from 14 points.
Lula would still win a second-round runoff against Bolsonaro by 51% to 39% if the vote were today, a 12-point lead that has narrowed from 18 points last month, the BTG/FSB poll said.
Bolsonaro has stepped up social welfare spending, with pay-out of increased monthly stipends to low-income families starting on Tuesday, and he has worked to reduce fuel costs that have spurred inflation, the major complaint from voters.
His negative numbers have come down, with 44% of those surveyed seeing his government as bad or terrible, down from 50% in early June, while 53% say they would never vote for him, compared to 59% in June, the new poll said. Lula's rejection rate has risen marginally to 45% of voters, it said.
The survey by pollster FSB commissioned by investment bank BTG Pactual polled 2,000 people between Aug. 5 and 7 and has a margin of error of 2 percentage points up or down.
(Reporting by Anthony Boadle; Editing by Steven Grattan and Bernadette Baum)