Spanish stocks drop sharply after Catalonia declares independence

  • Catalan parliament makes independence declaration, sending stocks tumbling.
  • Spain’s benchmark index, the IBEX 35, falls more than 2% on the day.

LONDON — Stocks in Spain have dropped sharply on Friday afternoon after Catalonia’s parliament declared independence from the rest of the country.

Lawmakers in the regional parliament in Barcelona voted to become a sovereign independent state against Spain’s wishes. Carme Forcadell, the president of the parliament, also asked the EU to recognise Catalonia as a sovereign nation.

It came as Spain’s prime minister asked the Senate to approve Article 155, which would allow the government to take control over Catalonia.

The vote led to a big fall in Spain’s benchmark IBEX 35 share index, which dropped to a loss of more than 2% on the day shortly after the vote, hitting a low of around 10,130 points.

Here’s the chart:

Elsewhere, market reaction to the vote has so far been subdued, with the euro virtually unmoved on the declaration. Prior to the vote it was around 0.45% lower, and 20 or so minutes after, is just over 0.5% down.

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