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Chris Hughes

Brexit Will Slap a 'For Sale' Sign on U.K. Plc

A sterling collapse would be great for foreign buyers.

The independence of U.K. multinationals could be at risk if sterling collapses after a vote for Brexit. Shares denominated in pounds would suddenly look cheap to buyers armed with a fistful of dollars. Companies whose revenues come largely from outside the UK -- and hence are less vulnerable to a post-Brexit economic shock -- might well look like attractive and affordable targets.

Big currency moves can become an enabler for longstanding takeover ideas that, for whatever reason, didn't stack up previously. Sterling's negative reaction to polls pointing to an "out" result on June 23 suggest worse to come for the pound if Britons actually vote to leave. M&A bankers may spy an opportunity.