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British Pound Slumps as Conservatives Splinter on Brexit Vote

British Pound Slumps as Conservatives Splinter on Brexit Vote

Ilya Spivak, Head Strategist, APAC

Talking Points:

  • UK PM Cameron Sets Brexit Referendum Date for June 23
  • Cabinet Splinters as Some Key Ministers Oppose Cameron
  • Pound Drops as London Mayor Johnson Backs Leaving EU

The British Pound dropped at the open of the trading week after leaders of the ruling Conservative party chose to support opposite sides in a referendum to decide whether the UK will stay or leave the EU (so-called “Brexit”). Prime Minister David Cameron hammered out a deal on updated membership terms at a summit of EU leaders in Brussels last week. He subsequently announced that the vote will be held on June 23, after presenting the terms of the accord to his cabinet on Saturday.

Mr. Cameron’s own inner circle has splintered on the issue. Justice Secretary Michael Gove, Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith, House of Commons leader Chris Grayling, Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers, Culture Secretary John Whittingdale and Employment Minister Priti Patel all support a UK exit from the regional bloc.

Selling pressure only reached fever pitch after Boris Johnson announced that he too would cast his vote in favor of leaving the EU and actively advocate for the pro-Brexit campaign. The London Mayor is one of the UK’s most popular politicians, with a recent poll showing he is second only to Mr. Cameron himself in influencing public opinion on the issue. As it stands, the latest surveying of voters shows that 48 percent favor staying in the EU, 33 percent want to leave and 19 percent are undecided.

What do DailyFX analysts expect from the British Pound in 2016? See the forecast here!

British Pound Slumps as Conservatives Splinter on Brexit Vote

--- Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for DailyFX.com

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