1. Corporate earnings 'pound-ed': Though an actual departure from the EU likely won't take place for years, (if at all, see point #7), stocks in the U.S. are taking a hit now because the dollar is rising against many other world currencies. A stronger dollar can pressure exports and earnings for American companies. If revenue and earnings come down, so too do valuations, meaning stock prices fall.
2. The China syndrome: If the dollar continues to rise, the value of China's currency may have to come down for it to remain competitive. This could lead to a trade war and increased global deflation. It was fears over China, remember, that sent stocks spiraling earlier this year. Watch China.
3. Greece may be the word, (again): Breaking news! The Greek debt crisis that rattled the globe a few years ago never really ended, it simply lurched on from year to year. Now some suggest we could see another round of southern European sovereign debt fears, both from increased risk to global credit markets and a slowdown in the Greek and/or Italian economies. How do you say "here we go again" in Greek?
4. Gold and gold miners look good but...: Nervous investors buy gold. When gold rises, so too do gold miner shares. Case in point, Newmont Mining, which has jumped 5% in the past few sessions, solidifying its title as the best performing stock in the S&P500 this year. But as data provider FactSet points out, no company in the S&P500 gets a higher percentage of its revenue from the U.K. than Newmont Mining. Tread carefully.
5. Oil may stabilize or rebound: Crude has fallen the past few sessions on fears a Brexit-related economic slowdown could hurt oil demand, pushing up inventories. But as Goldman Sachs notes, it will be months, or longer, before we really know the terms of any E.U. exit. Plus, even an immediate slowdown in the European and British economies should only take a few hundred thousand barrels per day off the market, something the market should be able to tolerate, especially with declining production from Nigeria and the U.S.
6. Good news for home buyers: One upside here may be falling bond yields. The nervous money is pouring into U.S. government debt, sending interest rates down. This may drive mortgage rates even lower, putting some below 3%. The Brexit may also take any Fed rate hike this year off the table. However, before realtors rejoice, keep in mind that if the markets keep falling we could result in a real estate slowdown, especially at the high end.
7. Exit, Brexit: Finally, don't ignore the possibility that none of this may actually happen. At this writing more than 3 million people have signed a petition calling for a re-vote. There is also a suggestion that Scotland may have the power to veto the entire thing by not giving its parliamentary consent. Even if those two avenues fail, the actual separation from the EU will take years, and anything could happen in the interim.