British new Prime Minister Boris Johnson seemingly doubles down on his no-deal Brexit threat, as British currency hits new lows.
The value of the British pound sterling (GBP) has dropped to its lowest point in over a year as market’s take in the new British prime minister’s position on Brexit.
With Boris Johnson doubling down on his threat to remove the UK from the EU without a deal by October 31, the pound dipped 1.1 percent to $1.22 .
Johnson, a Brexit hardliner, has formed a cabinet of filled with proponents of a so-called hard Brexit, including senior Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg.
The sterling experienced its biggest drop against the dollar since the 1970s in the immediate aftermath of the Brexit referendum in June 2016.
“We see more GBP weakness to come,” ING said in a note to clients. “The current sterling meltdown is in line with our view that GBP risks are heavily skewed to the downside given the Brexit uncertainty and rising odds of an early election (our base case).”
Analysts are uncertain whether Johnson is trying to call the EU’s bluff to force them to negotiate a favourable deal for the UK’s exit from the bloc or whether he believes that a ‘no-deal Brexit’ remains inevitable.
“The Withdrawal Agreement is dead, it’s got to go. But there is scope to do a new deal,” Johnson told reporters on Monday.
If the UK and the EU do not reach an agreement over Brexit, Britain would leave on October 31 without a deal. The date is an extension from the original March 31 deadline.
Moving assets out of the UK
With the UK’s ongoing no-deal Brexit process, several financial institutions had moved their assets to European cities in order to save their market capacity in the EU.
Several institutions, such as Bank of America, Barclays, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, have prepared their Europe hub and shifted hundreds of billions of assets out of the UK to Ireland, Germany and France.
For example, Barclays shifted at least $215 billion worth of assets to Dublin to prepare itself for a no-deal Brexit, at a cost of about $200 million.