Cover of MoneyWeek magazine issue no 708

Don't be spooked by Putin: Have a punt on eastern Europe

11 September 2014 / Issue 708

Putin is trying to reassert Russian power, with eastern Europe caught in the sanctions crossfire, but the region has potential, says Matthew Partridge. Read this week's cover story here.

Chaos ahead if Scotland says Yes
New iPhone that could transform banking
Why it pays to have a degree

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Merryn Somerset WebbEDITOR'S LETTER

Merryn Somerset Webb

An abrupt wake-up call

A month ago, the market was showing absolutely no interest in Scotland. Everyone assumed that the result would be a No vote and that after 18 September, everything would just go back to normal.

They aren’t assuming that anymore: by the time you get your next MoneyWeek, Scotland could have voted to break up the most successful political and economic union in history. And that has consequences for all of us.

I wrote at length about this last week, but I think it’s worth reiterating the key point. My reason for voting No is not based on the idea that Scotland can’t go it alone; it is that going it alone will make things worse for those of us who live in Scotland and possibly elsewhere.

There are endless short-term things to worry about here. There is the volatility of the pound; there is the effect of uncertainty on the gilt and equity markets; and there is the near certainty that the hostile negotiations surrounding the separation in the run up to the next UK election will make us all utterly miserable.

Some of these problems can be washed over with more easy money (expect rates to be lower for even longer after a Yes vote). Some cannot.

But for Scotland, this would be just the beginning.

• Read the full editor’s letter here: An abrupt wake-up call