On Wednesday 29 March 2017, exactly 280 days after the referendum, Prime Minister Theresa May triggered Article 50 and formally commenced Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union (EU). As a consequence of this historic event, the UK has now entered a 24-month negotiation period with the European Commission to agree upon the final terms that will define the country’s Brexit path. The Government has already begun to lay down the legal foundations for this process; on 30 March the Great Repeal Bill white paper was released, outlining how the country will transfer, and if necessary repeal, existing European legislation, fortifying its newly defined governance as an independent entity.
Despite the country’s progression into uncharted territory charging much speculation, the general consensus surrounding the implications of Brexit is resounding. Taking into account the attitudes of society and the investors that propel innovation and growth, Britain has proven its resolve.
In Q4 2016, the UK economy grew by an impressive 2% as a consequence of private sector productivity and robust consumer spending. Looking to the year ahead, industry bodies are confident the economy will maintain this positive momentum – the British Chambers of Commerce forecasts that UK GDP will expand by 1.4% in 2017.
Amidst a period of significant transformation and change, investor confidence remains high – a report in February 2017 revealed that 44% of UK investors believe that leaving the EU will have a positive impact on their investment strategies this year, with a further 22% predicting no notable effect. The results defy initial speculation that Brexit would negatively impact financial plans. Backed by buoyant investor confidence, Britain is positioned on the cusp of significant opportunity, now charged with forging a new global identity that champions its strengths as an international hub for innovation and growth, as well as its renowned industries and investment markets. Within the property sector, these investment markets extend from residential and commercial real estate opportunities to large-scale development projects – both in London and equally in the regional hotbeds holding lucrative, not to mention increasingly competitive, investor interest across the British Isles.
To understand how the country’s private investors are approaching their financial strategies in light of Britain’s pending withdrawal from the EU, Market Financial Solutions (MFS) has surveyed a nationally representative sample of 1,000 UK investors to find out how Brexit will affect their financial plans over the coming 24 months. The results are enlightening, revealing a responsive, adaptable and progressive investor community that will not let the onset of Brexit negotiations derail their investment plans.