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Brexit - once the dust has settled...

Ahead of the curve

July 2016

Home / Perspectives / Ahead of the curve: Brexit – once the dust has settled…

Neil Williams, Group Chief Economist
05 July 2016
EconomicsPerspectives
  • AC-0716The UK’s vote to leave the EU has global implications. Markets must assess the path that a new political line-up will choose to go down. Even a ‘soft exit’ may take years just to get back close to square one.
  • Once the dust settles, the UK economy will of course survive, given its entrepreneurial flair, increasing focus on non-EU trade, & likely policy loosening by the BoE & UK Treasury. But, further QE would only intensify the pressure on pension funds.
  • With elections elsewhere, the erosion of the EU’s safe-haven status offers an additional brake for the US Fed to ‘peak out’ early on rate hikes - suggesting an ultra short rate-tightening cycle.
  • Deeper fiscal union in the euro-zone may now come at the expense of a wider one. And, globally, the risk of beggar-thy-neighbour policies, unless checked, could unravel decades of globalisation.
  • The UK needs to reassert policy credibility. Outside the EU, we’ll probably have to compromise to retain Single Market access, especially as it’s our second European ‘divorce’. So, future trade tie-ups may not be ‘without strings’ - just like EU membership then!...

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Neil Williams Group Chief Economist Neil joined Hermes in August 2009 and is responsible for Hermes’ economic research. He has a forward-looking approach to generate investment strategy ideas. Neil adopts top-down methods – macro and market analysis to identify interest rate and credit value, and sovereign default risk. Neil began his career in 1987 at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), becoming its youngest ever Head of Economic Policy. He went on to hold a number of senior positions in investment banks - including Director of Bond Research at UBS, Head of Research at Sumitomo International, Global Head of Emerging Markets Research at PaineWebber International, and, before coming to Hermes, Head of Sovereign Research and Strategy at Mizuho International. Neil has 29 years’ industry experience and earned an MA in Economics in 1986 from Manchester University, having the previous year completed his BSc (Hons), also in Economics, from University College Swansea.
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