The pound could jump by as much as 6% against the dollar and UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage could resign Friday if Britain votes to remain in the European Union in Thursday’s referendum.
With just one day until Britons vote, the polls appear to be moving in favour of the Remain camp.
Remain has a 7-point lead over the rival Leave camp, according to a poll for The Telegraph.
Remain leads Leave by 53% to 46%, with 2% saying they don’t know. The poll was carried out by ORB International and had a survey size of 800 people who all said they would definitely vote.
So far, more attention has been given to apocalyptic market scenarios in the event of a Brexit than what would happen if the UK votes to stay in the EU.
Some of the forecasts have been grim. This week HSBC estimated the pound could fall by 15% against the dollar and that gross-domestic-product growth will be 1% to 1.5% lower in 2017 than it would have been otherwise if Britain voted to leave the EU.
But, with the result on a knife edge, there is a good chance it won’t turn out that way, Here are some of the predictions of how Friday could unfold if the UK votes to stay:
- The pound will likely get a bump against the dollar, as future uncertainty clears. “Should a remain outcome be confirmed, the market will immediately begin to focus on underlying indicators and in this scenario we can envisage sterling reaching $1.56 within a year,” Bill O’Neill at UBS Wealth Management said.
- Stocks are set to rise rapidly on a Remain vote, with Barclays and Ryanair the big winners in the UK, according to research by Macquarie, while Morgan Stanley has said that EU indexes would rally even harder.
- The goodwill might flow across the Atlantic too, as risky assets become more attractive. Analysts from Morgan Stanley said in a note that “this episode could go the way of Y2K,and by July 4th we in the US may be celebrating our independence from Britain while we are also celebrating Britain’s lack of independence from Europe, with materially higher markets.”
- Yields on bonds will rise sharply as investors dump safe government debt assets for riskier shares, according to a note from Deutsche Bank published on Tuesday.
- Further down the line, that could translate to higher central bank rates. With no EU referendum to worry about roiling financial markets, central bankers can focus more fully on stopping inflation. The Bank of England’s inflation report on August will be an important moment, according to Bill O’Neill at UBS: “It will be a pivotal point in the direction of policy for the last months of the year,” he said.
- Leadership challenges on the right-wing would come to a head. Bookies at Ladbrokes have now chalked up Nigel Farage at 8/11 to have left his position with the Eurosceptic party within a few days of the EU Referendum outcome.
A victory for Remain wouldn’t necessarily halt the momentum of nationalist parties across Europe. According to CLSA’s “Greed and Fear” research note, a narrow victory could still empower right-wing movements on the continent and “it would take a 10-point-plus majority for the “ins” for the referendum to become neutral for Eurozone separatists,” according to CLSA’s Greed and Fear research note.
And here’s all you need to know about the EU referendum: