EU ready to strike Brexit deal in ‘six to eight WEEKS’ declares Barnier – Pound SOARS

Monday, September 10, 2018
By Paul Martin

THE European Union is ready to strike a Brexit deal within six to eight weeks, chief negotiator Michel Barnier has declared, sending the pound soaring.

By KATIE MANSFIELD
Express.co.uk
Mon, Sep 10, 2018

Mr Barnier told a forum in Slovenia it is “realistic” to expect a divorce deal with Britain in six to eight weeks – suggesting the divorce could be settled by the week beginning October 15 – just in time for the EU Summit on October 18.

The EU chief negotiator said: “I think that if we are realistic we are able to reach an agreement on the first stage of the negotiation, which is the Brexit treaty, within 6 or 8 weeks.

“Taking into account the time necessary for the ratification process, the House of Commons on one side, the European Parliament and the Council on the other side … we must reach an agreement before the beginning of November. I think it is possible.”

Sterling jumped to a five-week high of $1.3052 on the report of Mr Barnier’s comments, up around 1 percent on the day, and rose around 0.5 percent against the euro.

Viraj Patel, a currency strategist at ING in London, said: “It just shows that’s the key thing that people want to see – Brexit progress.

“You have a market that’s heavily short on sterling due to Brexit. It needs that tail risk to be taken off before sterling can rally.”

The British currency had last week posted its biggest weekly drop in a month, tumbling 0.3 percent to the dollar.

Sterling has rallied in recent weeks off lows below $1.27, lifted by favourable comments from Mr Barnier.

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