Brexit

Brexit Drives Investor Pessimism

Beyond the battling over passporting and myriad issues tied to the negotiations over Brexit and the snap election scheduled for later this week, a number of verticals and industries in the region are fretful about Brexit consequences and what the seismic shift means for them.

All of this takes place against an election where there have been three terrorist attacks in three months and the voters will decide which government will move toward more concrete negotiations that will help shape Brexit’s reality.

If nervousness is pervasive on the geopolitical stage, so, too, it’s clear that anxieties about Brexit consequences are emerging in asset management. An Invesco survey showed that of 97 asset managers, 41 percent said that they would look to be underweight in the region, lightening positions in the United Kingdom. Among developed markets, said these managers, Britain would be deemed the least attractive, with a 5 out of 10 rating, off from 7.5 last year.

The concern has been pushing beyond investments and into other industries, too. The E.U. drug regulator said earlier this week that the hundreds of millions of pounds the industry stands to lose as part of Brexit consequences — offered as a projection via the European Medicines Agency — is a “worst case scenario” amid thoughts that hundreds of jobs will be shifted away from U.K. firms.

And in the latest Brexit news re: agriculture, The Guardian reported that U.K. farmers have now become “increasingly gloomy” about what the impact of Brexit may be, with a reading on a confidence scale coming in at about 0, where once it was a reading of 19. About 20 percent of farmers surveyed by the National Farmers’ Union said they would reduce investments in their operations, with only half looking to increase investments. This reversal of enthusiasm comes after farmers, as a group, were among the most visible supporters of Brexit, as they criticized regulations.

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