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EU tells Britain to make up its mind on Brexit deal

Yahoo Finance’s Oscar Williams-Grut breaks down the latest developments on a potential Brexit deal.

Video Transcript

ADAM SHAPIRO: Welcome back to Yahoo Finance "On the Move." There was a time when all we talked about was Brexit. Ah, the good old days before the pandemic, right? Oscar Williams-Grut is standing by for us live in London, because there's another deadline among the deadlines for us to consider. Oscar, 10 weeks and counting, right?

OSCAR WILLIAMS-GRUT: That's right, and it looks like we could actually see the resumption of negotiations between the EU and the UK after that spectacular collapse last week when the UK told EU negotiators not to even bother coming to London this week. What it unlocks at this time is Michel Barnier, the head of Brexit negotiations for the EU, he made some pretty significant comments in the European parliament today. He said that despite the difficulties we've faced, an agreement is within reach if both sides are willing to work constructively. He said the EU was willing to seek the necessary compromises and would work right up until the last day which it's possible to do so.

Now, these comments which were interpreted as giving a bit of ground on the EU side, that phrase about necessary compromises, that caught the ear of Downing Street. A spokesperson for the prime minister said this afternoon that the comments have been received with interest and that they were significant comments. We are studying carefully what was said, the spokesman said. And David Frost, the UK's chief negotiator, is holding a call with Michel Barnier today.

Now, just in the last few hours, we've had several newswires reporting that figures within Downing Street are expected to make an announcement, saying that talks will resume this week. Apparently, the EU is preparing to send people to London as soon as Thursday, which is, of course, tomorrow, to resume talks, so very quickly back to the table. This is absolutely music to the ears of investors. The pound has been on a tear today, up over 1% against both the euro and the dollar and at a six week high.

However, it might be getting a little ahead of ourselves, of course. Remember, these negotiations have been going on all year, and there have been significant differences that have remained throughout, so there will still be a lot of work to be done once two sides get around the table. The deadline that's being talked about now is November 13. That's apparently when they want to try and seal a deal. That would give them three days before this informal meeting of EU leaders in Berlin on November 16, which is seen as the final deadline for when approval of any deal could realistically be done before the end of the year and the end of the transition period.

ADAM SHAPIRO: And we obviously will keep an eye on that.