After the shock

This will certainly be a Black Friday for sterling and global financial markets. The real issue is the longer-term decline that will follow the immediate shock.

Even the Brexit campaigners admitted that Exit would inevitably be painful in the ‘short term’. Aside from the blame tactics, against Europe and immigrants, used by the Brexiteers though, there was also a promise of hope.

Yet we have already seen the effect that the Referendum uncertainty had on investment and the economic recovery in the first half of 2016. And so as that uncertainty continues, almost certainly for more than the two year renegotiation period, recession will lead to further job losses and welfare cuts and that hope will quickly evaporate.

Experts predicted this, but we were told that we didn’t need experts. But the reality is that the Leave voters weren’t told how bad things are going to get (for them).

And as that reality starts to bite, the politics of hate, targeting immigrants and the politics of austerity, targeting the poor, will only increase. If we think Britain looks divided now, I fear that our condition is only going to deteriorate.

Dr Huw Macartney