Hann-Ju Ho, Rseearch Analyst at Lloyds Bank, explains that France votes in the first round of the presidential election this Sunday and in the absence of an outright majority, the top two candidates will face off in a second round of voting on 7th May.
“Current polls suggest Emmanuel Macron (likened to Tony Blair) and far-right Marine Le Pen will win through to the second round, but polling margins of error suggest conservative François Fillon and far-left Jean-Luc Mélenchon could succeed.”
“Macron is expected to win and Le Pen to lose in the second round against any other opponent, but markets remain concerned about the possibility of a non-mainstream president.”
“Both Fillon and Macron support economic reforms, while both Le Pen and Mélenchon favour France’s withdrawal from the EU and/or the euro.”
“The National Assembly elections in June could be at least as important as the presidential contest, as the legislature could curtail the president’s ability to enact his or her agenda, including the possibility of a ‘Frexit’ referendum.”