Wednesday 16 January 2019
IN THE wake of Theresa May's heavy defeat in the commons for her Brexit deal, our business experts look at what might happen next.
Dr Gordon Fletcher, retail and small business expert at the University of Salford Business School, comments on the frustration being felt by SME business owners over ongoing Brexit uncertainty.
Dr Fletcher said: “We live in the era of fractal politics - a time when anything can happen. The newspapers are emphasising the historic defeat of the government in what can also be described as the most predictable outcome of modern parliament. Immediately after the vote the opposition also predictably did what they needed to do in calling a vote of no confidence.
“During all of this playing out of parliamentary democracy, small and medium sized businesses have had very little voice and are struggling to plan for the future. The EU leadership is probably best expressing their frustration (perhaps ironically it could be argued) in asking, "what is it that Parliament really wants?" Without any clear answers the UK steps one day closer to the 29th of March without any stability or clarity.
“The immediate business reaction was a good gauge of the certainty of the outcome. Exchange rates wobbled - not because the defeat was surprising but rather because of the size of the defeat. Then sense prevailed as currency traders realised that a meaningful vote and an historic defeat did not offer any greater clarity or solution to Brexit. Given the equal uncertainty facing the current US government shutdown traders also recognised they were trying to play a zero sum game. Then stock markets started opening in parallel with the realisation that the government will probably win today's vote of no confidence as the DUP and dissenters from last night's vote come back to the party line. Another zero sum game in the world of fractal politics.”
0161 295 5361