U.S. Markets closed

Brexit Vote Risks Keep Europe ETFs on Their Toes

This article was originally published on ETFTrends.com.

European markets and region-related exchange traded funds were among the worst off areas of the global markets Monday after British Prime Minister Theresa May unexpectedly delayed a vote for the Brexit deal on the eve of the scheduled parliamentary assembly.

On Monday, Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF (VGK) was down 1.0% and iShares MSCI EMU ETF (EZU) was 0.8% lower, with both broad Europe ETFs trading near their lowest level since April 2017.

May's decision to delay the vote could pave the way for a number of uncertain outcomes, such as a disorderly Brexit without a deal, a last minute deal pushed through just weeks before Britain's March 29 exit or another E.U. referendum, Reuters reports.

“If we went ahead and held the vote tomorrow the deal would be rejected by a significant margin,” May told parliament, adding that she was confident it was the right choice. “We will therefore defer the vote scheduled for tomorrow and not proceed to divide the House at this time."

Kenny Polcari of ButcherJoseph Asset Management argued the latest developments over Brexit only added onto the global headaches that have riled markets in recent weeks, the Washington Post reports.

“The market has been focusing on all the negative stories,” Polcari told the Washington Post. “As long as the tone is negative, any negative story is going to cause a market overreaction. Brexit is certainly one of them. All of a sudden, Brexit has hit a real speed bump. That’s what’s going on.”

Many remained jittery on global markets in recent weeks as the U.S. maintains its hard line approach on trade talks with China. Market observers saw the hiccup in the critical parliamentary vote as another cloud of uncertainty that covered the global outlook.

“This is a tough market,” Steve Chiavarone, who runs Federated Investments’ global allocation fund, told the Wall Street Journal, adding that global tensions are leading investors to price “in a recession where you see some stocks down 30% or 40%.”

For more information on the European markets, visit our Europe category.