Sterling falls as ‘Yes’ camp takes shock Scottish poll lead

Alexander Newton

The pound has fallen to its lowest level since last since last November, after a poll showed the ‘Yes’ campaign had taken the lead with less than two weeks to go before the Scottish referendum.

 

Sterling plunged by 0.7% in early trading from $1.6165 to $1.6221. If it fails to recover this ground it would be the currency’s weakest daily showing in eight months.

 

The news follows a YouGov survey in The Sunday Times which revealed that the pro-independence campaign had taken a lead in the polls with 51% of the vote. The move means the Yes campaign had overturned a 22-point margin in the space of a month.

 

Financial companies based in Scotland have reacted to the swing in the polls by seeking to reassure investors of their contingency plan in the event of independence.

 

Lloyds Banking Group told The Financial Times: ‘In the event of a Yes vote in the referendum, there would be no immediate changes or issues which could affect our business or our customers.’

 

Aegon also told the paper a yes vote would not have an immediate impact on its clients.

 

Standard Life said that it had set out contingency plans in August. These plans could see it move parts of its business out of Scotland in the event of independence.