by Szu Ping Chan, The Telegraph:
House prices could crash by 25pc and the pound drop by a third if the UK leaves the EU, according to Fitch, which warned that social tensions risked boiling over even if Britain stays in the bloc.
The rating agency said a messy exit characterised by “rancorous and protracted” trade negotiations would fuel market turbulence and risk “permanent damage” to the UK’s financial sector.
Brexit could ‘shift centre of gravity in EU’
Under this scenario, the value of sterling would drop by 30pc against a basket of other currencies by the end of 2016, pushing retail failures to levels not seen since the 2008 financial crisis and hitting UK landlords through a clampdown in immigration.
However, Fitch warned that a vote to stay in the bloc would also lead to unrest, as it predicted that net EU migration would remain elevated for years to come.
“Net EU migration to UK would remain high [if the UK votes to stay in the EU], with the resulting social tensions and core discontent with the EU ultimately unresolved,” Fitch said in a report.
It also warned that leaving the EU could shift “the centre of gravity of the EU” towards “more protectionist and less economically liberal” policies.
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