The referendum on Britain's EU membership took centre stage again this week as the campaigns for both sides took shape. Former Marks & Spencer CEO Stuart Rose was unveiled as the chairman of "Britain Stronger In Europe", a cross-party group in favour of continued membership. It will include three former prime ministers Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and John Major and several pro-EU business figures, including Richard Branson.
An "out" campaign known as "Vote Leave" has also emerged, run by Matthew Elliott, the head of eurosceptic lobbying group Business For Britain. It boasts donors and MPs from both sides of the political spectrum, along with renowned business figures, including Luke Johnson, founder of Pizza Express. Meanwhile, this week saw Lloyds chairman Lord Blackwell, a former adviser to Margaret Thatcher and John Major, come out for "out".
What the commentators said
This divide is partly reflected in the "great Brexit punch-up" now taking place, said Sebastian Payne on Politico.eu. Vote Leave is squaring off against Leave.eu, the group hitherto associated with Farage and Ukip.
Subscribe to MoneyWeek
Subscribe to MoneyWeek today and get your first six magazine issues absolutely FREE
It looks as though Vote Leave is "much slicker" than its rival. Its wide range of supporters suggests it will be "a business-focused campaign with a broad message" focusing on the "safe, sensible business arguments". It appears to have the "media know-how [and] campaigning expertise to convince voters that Brexit is best for Britain". Leave.eu is expected to be subsumed into its new rival, said Economist.com. Then the battle will begin in earnest. With the polls very close, there is still "all to play for".
Andrew is the editor of MoneyWeek magazine. He grew up in Vienna and studied at the University of St Andrews, where he gained a first-class MA in geography & international relations.
After graduating he began to contribute to the foreign page of The Week and soon afterwards joined MoneyWeek at its inception in October 2000. He helped Merryn Somerset Webb establish it as Britain’s best-selling financial magazine, contributing to every section of the publication and specialising in macroeconomics and stockmarkets, before going part-time.
His freelance projects have included a 2009 relaunch of The Pharma Letter, where he covered corporate news and political developments in the German pharmaceuticals market for two years, and a multiyear stint as deputy editor of the Barclays account at Redwood, a marketing agency.
Andrew has been editing MoneyWeek since 2018, and continues to specialise in investment and news in German-speaking countries owing to his fluent command of the language.
10 vinyl records worth up to £10,000 - is one in your collection?
News Vinyl is experiencing a resurgence and collectors will pay up to £10,000 for some albums - is it time to dust off your old records?
By Marc Shoffman Published
FCA: Banks are still short-changing savers
The latest FCA review finds that while public shaming has encouraged providers into offering better deals on savings, many of those with closed accounts are still being shortchanged.
By John Fitzsimons Published