April 1, 2019 / 5:57 AM / 4 months ago

Goldman sees softer, later Brexit after withdrawal agreement defeat

FILE PHOTO: An EU flag flutters during an anti-Brexit demonstration outside the Houses of Parliament in London, Britain January 28, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah McKay

MILAN (Reuters) - The balance of risks around Brexit outcomes is tilted towards a softer, longer departure from the European Union, Goldman Sachs said after British lawmakers on Friday rejected Prime Minister Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement for a third time.

“Risks around the timing of the ratification of that modified Brexit deal are now skewed towards a long Article 50 extension (of greater than one year) rather than a short Article 50 extension (of fewer than three months),” Goldman Sachs Europe economist Adrian Paul wrote in a note late on Friday.

“A long extension of this kind would require UK participation in elections to the European Parliament,” he added.

Goldman Sachs cut to 45 percent from 50 percent the chance that a modified version of the current withdrawal agreement is eventually approved in the House of Commons. It said the odds of ‘no Brexit’ had risen to 40 percent from 35 percent, while it kept the probability of ‘no deal’ unchanged at 15 percent.

Reporting by Danilo Masoni; editing by Richard Pullin

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