Bank of England Birmingham
The Bank of England Governor announced emergency measures after the stock market crashed this morning, with £124 billion wiped off the value of UK companies.
The FTSE 100 plunged nearly 500 points to 5, 880 - down 7.19% - as experts warned of more carnage to come and potential recession.
If it closes the day down that much, it could be the biggest one day drop in the index’s history.
The Bank of England announced it will make a further £250 billion available to banks in a bid to steady the markets following the dramatic post-Brexit crash.
Bank governor Mark Carney said they had prepared for an economic shock following a Brexit vote and moved to reassure businesses.
He said: “It will take some time for the UK to establish a new relationship with Europe and the rest of the world.
“So some market and economic volatility can be expected as this process unfolds, but we are well prepared for this. Her Majesty’s Treasury and the Bank of England have engaged in extensive contingency planning and the chancellor and I have remained in close contact including through the night and this morning. The Bank of England will not hesitate to take additional measure as required, as markets adjust.”
EU referendum RESULTS
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The market had opened at 6, 338.10, with its lowest point so far 5, 788.74.
Banks bore the brunt of the fall, with Barclays down 27%, Royal Bank of Scotland down 28% and Lloyds taking a 24% dive.
Below: Alex Salmond says he expects a new push for a Scottish independence vote
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Market analysts Bloomberg reported that it was the quickest drop in the value of the pound since 1971.
As former Lib Dem Business Secretary Vince Cable looked ahead to the prospect of a Brexit vote, saying: “I think the implications are very very major both economic and political.”
He added there will be political chaos as “all the things we’ve been warning about and were accused of scaremongering are proved as real”.
Craig Erlam, senior market analyst for foreign exchange firm OANDA, said at 4am: “The overconfidence in the UK to vote to remain in the EU has seriously come back to bite traders in the early hours of the morning.
“While there is still a long way to go, it is clear that people has significantly underestimated how many would vote to leave on Thursday.
“I’m sure this volatility will probably continue with plenty of results still to come in the final hours, the only question now is how much further is the pound going to fall.”