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Brexit fever is not halting long-term investment planning: CIO

With the two sides of the debate to stay or leave the European Union (EU) neck-and-neck in the British polls, currency markets are in turmoil with sterling fluctuating on the release of each new voter survey. However St. James' Place Chief Investment Officer Chris Ralph told CNBC that the uncertainty is not unnerving his clients.

"There's lots of different opinions around the [issue]… what we're not seeing is that clients are stopping talking to our advisers about their long-term tax planning, their long term investment planning and that's absolutely key," said Ralph, to CNBC on Tuesday from the Fund Forum in Berlin.

Sterling fell Monday on results of a poll which showed those campaigning to "Remain" in the EU only one point ahead over the "Leave" team. Forty-three percent of respondents intend to vote to keep Britain in the EU, while 42 percent support an exit vote in the referendum, reported Reuters, citing a message posted on Twitter by Times political correspondent Sam Coates.

"Brexit uncertainty is likely to continue putting downward pressure on GBP for now, but our central case remains that "Bremain" is the most likely outcome of the EU referendum (we assign a 25% chance for Brexit). Pent-up demand will likely emerge swiftly after the EU referendum," stated Nomura, in a note on Tuesday.

"After the recent rise in Brexit uncertainty and the associated weakness in GBP, we expect GBP to appreciate by around 3 percent against the G10 FX on a trade-weighted basis."

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Christopher Furlong | Getty Images
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In a note released Tuesday, Goldman Sachs stated: "A vote to leave the EU would see sterling weaken by 15 -20 percent in trade-weighted terms. This would likely provide a large offset to the largecap names. Indeed, that has been evident this year. Sterling fell sharply from the end of last year as investors focused on both Brexit risks and the weaker UK data prints."

"A weaker sterling is good for those companies in the U.K. that do export goods and therefore if as a result of the vote on June 23, sterling does fall, that would be good for exporters and you could argue it would be good for equity markets," said Ralph.

Britons will vote on June 23 on whether to remain in the 28-member bloc or not.

"Should the referendum outcome be to remain in the EU, we expect to see policy uncertainty conditions in the UK lessen, and this would be consistent with a modest pickup in flows into Europe," said Goldmans Sachs.


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