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Pound shoots higher as Farage says Brexit party won't stand in Tory seats

Mon, 11th Nov 2019 12:46

(Sharecast News) - Sterling shot higher on Monday after Nigel Farage said the Brexit party will not stand in the 317 seats won by the Conservatives at the 2017 general election, boosting Boris Johnson's chances of success.
At 1245 GMT, sterling was up 0.8% against the dollar at 1.2875 and 0.6% higher versus the euro at 1.1668.

Speaking at a campaign rally in Hartlepool, Brexit party leader Farage said the party would concentrate on seats held by Labour and other pro-Remain parties in a bid to "prevent the risk of a second Brexit referendum".

Farage said the decision was based on polling, which indicated that standing in seats in London, the South and the South West could split the vote of pro-Brexit candidates, allowing pro-Remain candidates to win.

Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com, said Farage has handed the Tories "an early Christmas present".

"The pound is stronger since a clear, decisive election win for the Conservatives will provide clarity on Brexit - anything else becomes messy," Wilson said.

"This is a big boost to the Conservative Party as the Brexit Party had talked about fielding 600 candidates. It changes the electoral map. Mr Farage seems to have been persuaded by Boris Johnson's commitment not to extend the transition period beyond December 2020. Mr Farage and everyone else knew it would have been crazy politics for the Brexit Party to take Leave votes away from the Tories and enable a pro-Remain grouping to take seats."

Wilson said it's "a massive moment" for the campaign and gives the Tories a clear run at Downing Street.

"But it will not make it any easier to hoover up seats from opposition parties - the risk of the Brexit Party sucking in Leaver votes in areas being targeted by the Tories remains. For Labour and in particular the Lib Dems in the south of England, it's going to make life very hard to dislodge incumbent Tories."

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