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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 22nd July 2016 > CAPTAIN CANADA


Can the North American running Britain’s central bank keep the country’s economy together after the Brexit vote?


ON JULY 4, 11 days after the U.K. voted to leave the European Union, New York–based ratings agency Standard & Poor’s issued a warning. Because of Brexit, it said, “the U.K. will barely escape a fullfledged recession,” and the decision to leave will drag down the U.K.’s predicted growth in 2017 by 1.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). The situation would get worse, it added, should the Bank of England not succeed “in keeping turmoil in financial markets in check.”

Which is ratings-agency-speak for: “Mark Carney, for the love of God, save us all!”

A day later, Carney, governor of the Bank of England, Britain’s central bank, held a press conference. Flanked by three of his employees, the Canadian financier did his best to prevent the decision made by 51.9 percent of the British electorate from doing further economic damage. “We have a clear plan, we’re rapidly putting its main elements in place, and it’s working,” he said, speaking to the deeply worried nation and financial world in the manner of an American president.

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