On the 23 June 2016 the British people voted to leave the EU, ending Britain’s 43 year membership. Whilst the long-term impact of Brexit is still uncertain, what is clear is that the Brexit campaign and the outcome of the referendum have had a dramatic impact on the strength of the pound and are continuing to do so.
Use this page to find out how the value of the pound has changed since Brexit, what events might have caused these changes and to learn more about the winners and losers of the depreciation of the pound.
Our interactive chart below shows the correlation between key Brexit events and their impact on the pound.
Looking for an event in particular?
The table below lists the dates included in our analysis. Use our search function to find the date of a particular event.
|9 June 2015||European Union Referendum Act 2015|
|19 February 2016||EU referendum date announced|
|1 March 2016||Government introduces European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill to Parliament|
|15 April 2016||Referendum campaigning begins|
|23 June 2016||Referendum polling day on EU membership|
|24 June 2016||Referendum result is to leave the EU, David Cameron resigns as Prime Minister|
|13 July 2016||Theresa May becomes new UK Prime Minister|
|3 October 2016||Theresa May announces Great Repeal Bill and that she will trigger Article 50 in March|
|4 October 2016||Legal challenge: is consent of the Northern Irish Assembly required to leave the EU?|
|13 October 2016||Nicola Sturgeon announces that a second referendum on Scottish independence is likely by 2020|
|17 October 2016||Legal challenge: can the Government trigger Article 50 without an Act of Parliament?|
|28 October 2016||Belfast High Court rules Government does not need the consent of the Northern Irish Assembly|
|3 November 2016||The English High Court rules Parliament must vote on whether Article 50 can be triggered|
|9 November 2016||Donald Trump wins US Presidential Election|
|23 November 2016||Autumn Statement. Philip Hammond, Chancellor of the Exchequer, outlines his financial plans|
|5 December 2016||Constitutional referendum held in Italy. Question to whether Italy will leave the Eurozone|
|7 December 2016||House of Commons vote to respect the outcome of the referendum|
|8 December 2016||Legal appeal against the High Court ruling that Parliament must vote on Article 50|
|17 January 2017||Government announces key objectives for the Brexit negotiations|
|24 January 2017||Legal appeal rejected, an Act of Parliament is required before triggering Article 50|
|2 February 2017||UK Government publishes White Paper on the UK’s exit from and new partnership with the European Union|
|13 February 2017||Government publishes White Paper on the UK’s exit from the EU|
|29 March 2017||Government triggers Article 50|
|18 April 2017||Theresa May calls snap general election|
|29 April 2017||EU27 leaders meet to agree on guidelines for future Brexit talks|
|22 May 2017||General Affairs Council of the EU authorises the opening of Brexit negotiations|
|8 June 2017||British general election. The Conservatives lose their parliamentary majority; Labour makes gains|
|9 June 2017||Theresa May says she will form a government, supported by the Northern Irish DUP|
|19 June 2017||Negotiations begin|
|21 June 2017||The Queen’s speech: formal announcement of the British government’s legislative program|
|22 June 2017||The European Council summit begins as a full EU28 meeting|
|13 July 2017||Jeremy Corbyn meets with EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier|
|17 July 2017||First full round of talks begin|
|27 July 2017||Government commissions experts in the Migration Advisory Committee to advise on UK’s post-Brexit border policy|
|15 August 2017||UK proposes a bespoke, temporary customs union with the EU|
|16 August 2017||UK releases a position paper on its proposals for Northern Ireland|
|21 August 2017||New UK position paper says existing safety and standards tests for consumer goods should still be valid in both markets after UK leaves|
|22 August 2017||UK releases position paper on civil judicial cooperation|
|23 August 2017||UK asks for a post-Brexit transitional legal arrangement between UK and EU|
|24 August 2017||British officials publish a position paper on data protection|
|28 August 2017||Next round of talks begins|
|6 September 2017||UK presents list of research programs and health care regulations it wants to remain part of|
|7 September 2017||European Commission releases Brexit position papers on a range of issues|
|12 September 2017||The EU Bill passes its second reading in the House of Commons|
|13 September 2017||European Commission president gives annual State of the EU speech, says Brexit is “not the future of Europe”|
|24 September 2017||German parliamentary elections|
|1 October 2017||Catalonian independence referendum | Conservative party conference|
|2 October 2017||European parliament vote against allowing the bloc to continue to the next phase of Brexit talks.|
| 2 November 2017||The Bank Of England raise the UK interest rate for the first time in 10 years, increasing it by 0.25%.|
| 12 November 2017||Reports that 40 Conservative MP’s are ready to sign a vote of no confidence in Theresa May. The news follows a leaked letter to May from Boris Johnson and Michael Gove, which appears to show the two giving the PM instructions on Brexit.|
- Referendum result. Following the vote to leave the EU, the pound fell sharply. In the weeks following the referendum the pound fell by 10.4% against the Euro from €1.3017 on 23 June to €1.1663 on 6 July 2016.
- Article 50 Legal challenge. In October 2016 negotiations took place to determine whether Theresa May could trigger Article 50 without parliamentary approval. It was during this legal battle that the pound fell by 4.6% from €1.1579 on 30 September 2016 to €1.1044 on 11 October 2016. The High Court ruled that the government must have parliamentary approval i.e. a law would need to be passed through the House of Commons and the House of Lords in order to authorise Article 50.
- Single market speculation. The pound fell once again on the 16 January 2017 due to speculation surrounding Theresa May’s hardline approach to Brexit and the expectation that she would announce that Britain will be leaving the EU single market. The pound fell by 3.45% following these reports from €1.1767 Euros on 3 January 2017 to €1.1361 on 16 January 2017.
- Article 50 triggered. Theresa May triggered Article 50 on 29 March 2017. This kick-started the formal process of Britain’s exit from the EU, and saw the pound drop by 0.65% from €1.1612 on 23 March 2017 to €1.1537 on 29 March 2017.
- General election results. The sterling suffered its highest fall of 2017 following the surprise election result as Theresa May lost her majority government, sparking more political uncertainty in Britain. The pound fell to a seven-month low of €1.1287.
The value of the pound is set to continue to rise and fall as Brexit negotiations proceed forward. All events that lead to increased uncertainty or changes to investor confidence and speculation will have some impact on the value of the pound. For example any statements made by EU or British officials on the speed and success of progress are likely to cause fluctuations in the currency.
Major forthcoming events with the potential to have an impact on pound include:
- The financial settlement. As part of the the deal to leave the EU the UK must pay a divorce bill to help pay off its existing liabilities within the EU and cover the transaction costs of leaving. This figure should be decided well in advance of the leaving date, with Jean-Claude Juncker the President of the European Commission insistent that this figure will be agreed before other negotiations proceed.
- Deadline day. Mr Barnier the European Chief Negotiator for Brexit has stated that he wants all talks to be completed by October 2018 to allow ratification of the agreement. This leaves the UK less than 18 months to complete their negotiations.
- Base interest rate decisions. The Bank of England (BOE) which sets the base interest rate will meet eight times in 2017. Their decisions are likely to have a big impact on the value of the pound. With UK inflation reaching 2.9% in September 2017, speculation suggests that the BOE will be forced to raise interest rates – a move that will likely see the value of the pound rise.
- Exit Day. EU treaties will cease to apply to the UK, two years after Article 50 was originally triggered, in March 2019 (unless all 28 EU members agree to extend it).
- No deal. With the progress of negotiations very slow, there are still questions as to whether an agreement will ever be made. Unravelling 43 years of treaties and agreements that cover thousands of subjects was never going to be a simple task.
The changing value of the pound will create winners and losers. So far since the decision to have a referendum on the EU the pound has seen a general depreciation, although its value has fluctuated significantly. The falling value of the pound essentially makes buying goods/services from abroad more expensive, but also means UK goods/services are now cheaper to those abroad – as a result of this certain groups will benefit from the pounds depreciation and others lose out.
While the falling value of the pound is generally perceived to be a negative consequence of Brexit, it does provide benefits in certain cases.
If you’re off on a business trip or planning a holiday abroad this year, then there are a few things you can do to help make up for the falling value of the pound.
Prepare: Some travel money providers require you to pass an identification process before you are able to exchange any funds and this authorisation process can take a number of days to complete. So in order to be able to exchange your travel money quickly when the exchange rate is strengthening in your favour, you can prepare by registering with a provider today.
Prepaid travel cards. Prepaid travel cards allow you to pre-load your money and lock in the exchange rate, rather than using the live rate as debit and credit cards will. Take a look at the strength of the pound – If it is looking favourable or predicted to be worse when you’re away, pre-load your cash and lock the exchange rate to give yourself more bang for your buck.
For anymore help on getting your travel money options right, check out our travel money comparison page or search our site for one of our country specific travel money guides.
If you or your business needs to send money overseas there are a few methods you can use in order to protect your money against currency shifts. Many international money transfer providers offer a variety of services which can allow you to transfer your funds when the currency is at your advantage, these include:
Spot contracts. These are ideal for one-off, fast, overseas payments, and allow you to agree an exchange rate with your provider based on the market rate.
Forward contracts. If you like the look of the exchange rate available at the moment but you don’t need to send your money just yet, a forward contract allows you to lock in today’s rate for a transfer at a later date.
Limit orders. A limit order allows you to send currency overseas at a guaranteed exchange rate. If you have a target exchange rate in mind for your transfer, you can set a limit order to automatically purchase the currency should this level become available.
Regular transfers. If you need to make regular overseas payments, some money transfer providers allow you to set up an automatic recurring payment plan to save you time and hassle. Whilst some variation in the exchange rate may occur, this option would provide you with an average exchange rate over time.Back to top