The leaders of the campaign to get Britain out of the European Union sought to ease concerns about the country’s uncertain economic future by giving public backing to Bank of England governor Mark Carney and finance minister George Osborne.
In the run-up to last week’s referendum, Mr Carney and Mr Osborne incensed Leave campaigners by warning a vote to pull out would hit the economy.
Mr Carney faced a call for his resignation from one lawmaker from the ruling Conservative Party during the campaign, and last week the official Vote Leave campaign released a video attacking him over his previous employment with Goldman Sachs.
But Boris Johnson, who is now considered the front-runner to become Britain’s next prime minister after steering the Leave campaign to victory, used his first comments since the vote to heap praise on the Canadian.
“Most sensible people can see that Bank of England governor Mark Carney has done a superb job — and now that the referendum is over, he will be able to continue his work without being in the political firing line,” Mr Johnson wrote in the Daily Telegraph newspaper.
Justice minister Michael Gove, who led Vote Leave with Mr Johnson, praised Mr Osborne for saying early yesterday that the UK would cope with the turmoil caused by the referendum result.
“I listened to the chancellor and I found his words incredibly reassuring,” Mr Gove told reporters.
Mr Johnson kept up the soothing tone, welcoming Mr Osborne’s message at a 7am news conference that there would be no rush for more austerity measures, despite having warned of higher taxes and spending cuts during the campaign.
Sterling fell by more than 8% against the dollar on Friday and was down by a further 3% yesterday.
The yield on 10-year UK government bonds fell below 1% for the first time as investors sought safe places to put their money.
Not everyone agreed that Mr Carney should remain at the Bank of England, among them Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party, which has campaigned to leave the EU for years.
“I don’t think the governor of the Bank of England behaved in an independent manner during this campaign at all,” Mr Farage told Canada’s Globe and Mail.
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