Just 12 hours ago, the Remain campaign was feeling quietly confident, and the markets even more so. After weeks of the pound tumbling, and the FTSE100 drifting downwards, suddenly there was an upsurge.
But after Britain voted to leave the European Union, the UK’s leading stock index has immediately plunged 8.3%, and the pound is in freefall.
The nosedive from 6334 points last night to 5807 today means billions has been knocked off the value of the stock market in hours.
The Bank of England said it is monitoring the situation closely.
House builder companies are among the most badly hit, which suggests investors are nervous about house prices.
Now the pound is at its lowest level against the dollar since 1985, and the Asian markets nosedived.
Financial insiders are already predicting a recession and a market shock that could last for years.
Piers Hillier, chief investment officer at Royal London Asset Management, said: “On the back of this morning’s result we expect the UK will fall into a recession. Unfortunately I see unstable market conditions lasting for between three and five years whilst new trade agreements are drawn up.
“It is our view that the UK Government will be left with no choice but to stimulate the economy through fiscal and monetary means, flooding the system with liquidity if necessary.”
The FT has reported that credit ratings agency S&P expects the UK to lose its last AAA rating – previously a sign of the nation’s creditworthiness.
The pound plummeted from $1.4877 to the pound last night to $1.3445 this morning. In other words, if you’d exchanged £1,000 for dollars last night, you’d have $143.20 more than if you did it now.
Nigel Green, founder and CEO of financial services group deVere said it was a “shock event”.
He continued: “Brexit-triggered volatility is now only just beginning; we can expect it to potentially last up to two years.
“Due the far-reaching impact of this vote, Brexit will inevitably affect the British and the European economies and the wider global financial markets. The decision may have been taken in the UK but it will impact the rest of the world too.”