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Cameron issues plea to Scots on independence as fund groups pull cash

The three political party leaders will be heading to Scotland today to try and secure a vote against independence, as uncertainty over the outcome of next week’s referendum sees fund groups pull money out of the country and amid warnings on the impact on mortgages.

The leaders of the three parties will be north of the border today selling their vision for a Scotland that has more powers to set its own taxes as financial services firms warn of serious consequences of a vote for independence.

Prime Minister David Cameron, deputy prime minister Nick Clegg and Labour leader Ed Miliband have said they are willing to devolve more financial power to Scotland if it votes no in the referendum later this month. A package put together and set to be voted on after the general election in the event of a no vote would give Scotland more power to set income tax and capital gains tax, though not corporation tax.

Writing in the Daily Mail, Cameron has called on the Scottish people not to “rip apart” the 307 year old union with the UK.

He says: “Our message to the Scottish people will be simple: ‘We want you to stay.’

“The United Kingdom is a precious and special country. That is what is at stake. So let no one in Scotland be in any doubt: we desperately want you to stay; we do not want this family of nations to be ripped apart. Across England, Northern Ireland and Wales, our fear over what we stand to lose is matched only by our passion for what can be achieved if we stay together.”

But Scotland’s first minister Alex Salmond said: “This is the day the No campaign finally disintegrated and fell apart at the seams. Together, David Cameron, Ed Miliband and Nick Clegg are the most distrusted Westminster politicians ever – and their collective presence in Scotland will be another massive boost for the Yes campaign.”

Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Societe Generale, JP Morgan, RBC Capital Markets and Credit Suisse have all said that a yes vote could have dire consequences for the economy putting the recovery at risk.

The Financial Times reports that asset managers, investors and pension savers are moving billions of pounds out of Scotland over fears of the economic consequences of independence. Multrees Investor Services, which manages bank accounts for the wealth management industry, said it had moved hundreds of milions of pounds of behalf of wealth managers following concerns over the referendum.

There have also been warnings about the impact on mortgage holders if Scotland votes Yes.

London and Country associate director of communications David Hollingworth told the Daily Telegraph introducing a new currency is likely to pose difficulties for those with mortgages.

He says: “Terms and conditions of a mortgage loan would be likely to remain the same but, if the loan payments are taken in sterling, then suddenly the borrower has a major conversion issue if they’re suddenly being paid in a new Scottish currency. They would not only be subject to interest loan fluctuations but also exchange rate volatility.”

Yesterday, in a speech to the Trades Union Congress Bank of England governor Mark Carney said a currency union with the UK in the event of a yes vote would be “incompatible with sovereignty” and would require a single central bank and shared banking regulation.



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There are 4 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. This has been horribly mis-managed from the moment the binary ballot was agreed with no voting percentage threshold, right through an incompetent ‘no’ campaign that has been hamstrung by having to defend ‘austerity’ in a country that has patently suffered from it.

    There’s a big constitutional crisis ahead – regardless of who (narrowly) wins, all due to Cameron and Osbornes hubris.

  2. Smithy is right, this has been horribly mismanaged by both sides considering the gravity of what is at stake.

    The Better Together Campaign has left it far too late to offer inducements that now look like desperation and the Scots know that the reputation of Westminster politicians for keeping their promises is abmissal. They must realise that the rest of the UK will react badly to these inducements and probably overturn them.

    Those in favour of independence have had decades to formulate a currenct strategy and yet in the final days they have no coherent strategy at all. Such a fundamental issue should have been foremost in their thoughts for years, not weeks, and this speaks volumes about their probable incompetence in making a success of independence.

    I feel for the Scots – half my ancestors are Scottish. I wouldn’t know which way to vote but I do know that Scotland has always leaned more to the left than England and as this country continues to move further to the right of the political spectrum, they may feel this is their only chance to escape.

  3. Looking as if the Yes campaign has certainly gathered considerable recent momentum however even if they were to win, a narrow or even a substantial majority, that only gives the SNP a mandate to start negotiations for withdrawal from the Union. At most there will perhaps be only 2m votes in favour of Scotland leaving a Union of some 60m people.
    What does Alex Salmond think the rest of us feel about him attempting to break up the Union?
    Answer – Nothing, as long as he gets his ‘high’ from this the long term future of Scotland and the Union is not being logically factored in.
    Mr Salmond is promising he will get all manner of wonderful things for Scotland from any negotiations that would have to ensue from a Yes vote and it would be up to the Scots to put forward there proposals as to how they could withdraw from the Union. In effect they would need to petition the UK Government to find out what terms the UK might be prepared to talk about. Perhaps he could start by offering to talk about buying back the Royal Bank of Scotland and the old Bank of Scotland from the British taxpayers, as otherwise there will be no significant Scottish owned banks in his nirvana.
    He also arrogantly tells the rest of the UK that it will be in OUR interests to enter a ‘currency union’ with an independent Scotland. Cloud cuckoo land Alex and I doubt you would like to put that to a democratic vote in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, but we might well suggest to OUR politicians that this must be a prerequisite before any agreements are reached.
    (Only a few thoughts, just trying to get some discussion going on this)

  4. Mr. Salmond, continually bangs on about how much better off Scotland will be once independent.

    Has anyone actually crunched the numbers and deducted from what GB pays over to Scotland, vs. the loss of the likes of:
    Navy shipyards
    Pensions in payment
    Health Service support
    The Corp Tax on the FS sector
    The Value of the HMRC and other Govt. jobs that i assume will have to be relocated South

    Re oil, how much is in the Scot Sector but still under contract to GB, I assume there will have to be a compensation deal of some description.
    And the VAT and duty on the petrol and the like will of course be raised in the UK – the place where it is sold – wont it?

    What are Scotland to do about defence – rent what they think they need?

    Thereafter – how much worse off / better off might we be?

    Or is this somewhat of double bluff or Machiavellian ploy and big send off by Mr. Cameron, knowing the political map will be re written in one fell swoop?

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