Pound Foolish?: Britain’s Economy Was Resilient After ‘Brexit.’ Its Leaders Learned the Wrong Lesson.


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The pound slumped more than 6 percent against the dollar in less than 10 minutes Friday.

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Justin Tallis/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

This article must begin with a mea culpa. When British voters decided in June that they wanted to depart the European Union, I agreed with the conventional wisdom that the British economy would probably slow and that uncertainty put it at risk of recession.

Advocates of “Brexit” argued that was hogwash, and the early evidence suggests they were right. For example, surveys of purchasing managers showed that both the British manufacturing and service sectors plummeted after the vote in July, yet were comfortably expanding in August and September.

But the events of the last couple of weeks suggest that British leaders are drawing…



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