Carney just be Prime Minister? Business leaders have more Brexit confidence in Bank of England governor than Theresa May's cabinet

William Turvill
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Governor Mark Carney Presents Bank of England's Financial Stability Report
Mark Carney came narrowly ahead of chancellor Philip Hammond (Source: Getty)

Business leaders have more confidence in Mark Carney to deliver a positive result on Brexit than Theresa May’s government… despite the fact the Bank of England governor is not involved in negotiations.

Asked how much confidence they have in Carney to “generate a positive deal for your business/ industry”, 200 finance chiefs across the UK and Europe gave him an average score of 8.59 out of 10.

The results of the Thomson Reuters survey will make uncomfortable reading for Prime Minister Theresa May, who scored 3.47, and some of her colleagues. International trade secretary Liam Fox earned the lowest score, 3.15, behind Brexit secretary David Davis and foreign secretary Boris Johnson, who scored 3.84 and 3.89 respectively.

Chancellor Philip Hammond was the big political winner, with a score of 7.99 out of 10 in the survey, conducted across July and August.

The chancellor has won friends in the business world for his favouring of a transitional period and a pro-immigration stance.

If 0 is no confidence and 10 is extremely confident, how much confidence do you have in the following individuals to generate a positive deal for your business/industry?

Prime Minister 3.47
Foreign secretary 3.89
Brexit secretary 3.84
Secretary of state for international trade 3.15
EU chief Brexit negotiator 4.38
Chancellor 7.99
Bank of England governor 8.59

WPP chief executive Sir Martin Sorrell told City A.M.: “We would be in favour of a ‘soft’ Brexit agreed quickly with a suitable transition period. We also need flexibility on movement of people, who are the lifeblood of our operation. Anybody who can deliver that we would support.”

Miles Celic, chief executive of TheCityUK, said: “I think Hammond and Carney have both been a terrifically safe pair of hands throughout the Brexit negotiations. I think they’ve both grasped the key issues for industry, they recognise the importance of ongoing mutual market access, of mutual regulatory recognition and the importance to industry of early indications of transitionals.”

Read more: City eyes its own Brexit positioning paper after customs plans laid out

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