Scottish Independence
Alex Salmond, leader of the SNP, wants Scotland to keep the pound if it gains independence from the UK Reuters

An overwhelming majority of Scots want to continue using the pound if Scotland becomes independent, according to a leading survey.

And there is minimal support for joining the troubled eurozone if Scotland votes 'yes' in the independence referendum on 18 September.

The Scottish Social Attitudes survey of 1,339 potential referendum voters, carried out by thinktank ScotCen, found that 79% would like an independent Scotland to continue to use the pound. Just 11% would like it to have its own currency, and only 7% to adopt the euro.

Alex Salmond, leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and campaigner for independence, has said Scotland would keep using the pound.

But in Westminster Labour, Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives have said there is no guarantee Scotland would be able to formally keep the sterling if it quits the UK.

The suggestion that Scotland would not be allowed in a sterling currency union post-independence appears to have filtered down to some Scottish voters.

Despite 79% wanting to keep sterling, only 57% think that an independent Scotland would end up using the pound. Just over a fifth think it would end up with euro and 16% its own currency.

But the chances of independence look weak. The survey found that excluding undecided voters, 61% plan to vote no and 39% yes.

And more people think there is an equal benefit from the union for Scotland and England than those who believe the English are better off.

Those saying England's economy benefits more from the union was 33%, while those who said it benefits both equally was 41%. Just 18% thought Scotland benefited more.

The majority back a pooling of resources and risks UK-wide in favour of Scotland going it alone, such as paying unemployment benefits and pensions, with the exception of income tax revenues.

ScotCen survey of Scottish social attitudes - pooling risk and revenues
A survey showed there is a lack of support for independence amongst Scots. ScotCen

"It appears that many of the issues that have received considerable attention in the referendum debate do not appear to be playing much if any role in determining whether voters are likely to vote yes or no," said the ScotCen report.

"This certainly seems to be true of much of the debate about Europe, currency and welfare spending, and perhaps even indeed that about nuclear weapons too.

"The one debate that we have identified does seem to matter apparent from the economics of independence is whether or not people feel the costs of paying welfare should be shared across the UK as a whole or kept to Scotland in particular."