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23 August 2019

No-deal Brexit most likely - survey

Leaving the EU without a deal is the most likely outcome of the ongoing Brexit negotiations, according to a survey at Redmayne Bentley.

Almost half of the firm’s investment managers and stockbrokers said they believed there was a greater chance of a no deal Brexit than a deal being reached before the UK leaves the EU on 31st October 2019.

The survey was conducted by the firm’s investment research department to gauge current opinion across the firm’s national office network on which, out of a set of potential outcomes, they felt was most likely.

 James Rowbury, Investment Research Coordinator, said: “The idea of a no deal has been at the forefront of my thinking for some time now, and as we edge closer to the October 31st deadline, the stark reality of a disorderly exit is dominating the daily headlines. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has taken the hard line with key EU figures, who have now left the ball in his court to devise an entirely new strategy to combat the ever-contentious Irish backstop; the negotiation’s biggest sticking point. Nevertheless, Whitehall civil servants have been mulling over alternative proposals for many months now, mostly in vain.

“If anything, Mr Johnson’s bluster and charm may well be his salvation to sway EU negotiators to his mandate. However, the key heads of state, including French President Emmanuel Macron, are displaying clear objection to any more leniency on extended time-scales. One thing is certain, Boris and his team have their work cut out: appeasing Parliament while at the same time convincing the EU to reach a consensus agreement in what is now the eleventh hour. All things considered, I don’t think these probabilities from our colleagues are too far off the mark.”

Of those surveyed, two thirds said they believed the EU would not renegotiate the withdrawal agreement while 52% said if a deal was to be reached, it would not be approved by Parliament. Around 16% said they believed a Brexit deal would be reached.

And almost a third – 29% - said a General Election would take place as a result of the current situation.
The findings came after Mr Johnson met German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Mr Macron last week to reopen Brexit negotiations with the EU. Mr Johnson said in order to avoid ‘no deal’, the backstop plan, which aimed to prevent a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland, had to be removed. However, Macron has argued that the backstop plan was indispensable. However, Mr Johnson said with “creativity and energy”, a way forward could be found.

Ends

The results were based on 50 responses taken between 20th and 23rd August 2019.

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No-deal Brexit most likely - survey
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