At Brexit Crunch Time, Theresa May Takes a Pummeling
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How finance teams are likely to respond to the Brexit vote delay

On Monday, 10 December, PM Theresa May announced that the Brexit vote on the withdrawal agreement will be delayed due to widespread concern for parts of the deal, such as the border that separates Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Ahead of the delay being announced, the pound took a sharp tumble to its lowest level in 18 months.

Adding to the uncertainty, Theresa May is facing a vote of confidence in her leadership later today, after 48 of her Conservative MPs called for one to be held. While it seems unlikely, losing the vote will force the PM to step down and trigger a leadership contest within the Conservative Party.

It is still unclear how much the current political developments, and the subsequent economic repercussions such as a weakened pound, will impact the longterm finances of UK businesses, but what seems inevitable is that many will have to ensure their planning processes remain nimble in order to accommodate any further chaos in the months to come.

“With Theresa May delaying the Brexit vote at the eleventh hour and the pound taking a subsequent tumble, companies across Britain will once again find themselves in a position where they need to adjust their financial plans,” says Rob Douglas, VP of UK&I for Adaptive Insights.

“For those who are not set up for continuous planning, adjusting their financial plans will be a tough and arduous job – there is no doubt that finance teams across the UK will be feeling the strain as the uncertainty around Brexit strikes again.”

A major problem, according to Douglas, is that companies must be able to plan for uncertainties to stay agile, something that many might struggle with. He continues:

“Businesses need a modern, active approach to planning and forecasting that goes beyond manual spreadsheets and processes that simply cannot quickly adapt to market and economic changes. After all, the EU withdrawal agreement is still up in the air and there will likely be more uncertainty to come.”

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