Last night, Austan Goolsbee, one of my favourite Chicago Booth professors and Omaba's former economics advisor discussed Brexit with Charles Grant, Centre for European Reform head, moderated by Amir Sufi, House of Debt author and Chicago Booth prof.
Here are some quick notes I made of what they said:
- if the UK votes to exit, I don't see how the euro can survive (Goolsbee)
- if Germany rebalanced its economy, that would give a breath of fresh air to the Eurozone economy (Grant)
- the Euro wouldn't fall to pieces if UK leaves because the political will from France and Germany is so strong, they will do whatever it takes to keep the euro (Grant)
- questions of identity are far harder to deal with than questions of interest. (Goolsbee)
- the government and serious economic thinkers are winning the economic argument, but immigration is the main argument of the Leave campaign (Grant)
- education, age and geography are the determinants for whether you are for or against Brexit (Grant)
- in the US, there is very little evidence that immigration has affected wage growth, but the public perception isn't that (Goolsbee)
- globalisation is not popular as a concept anywhere in Europe, but in the UK trade is popular with the common man, while immigration often isn't (Grant)
- one of the things that makes it easy to debate against Trump is that his rhetoric is so hateful, but in the UK are the arguments against immigration seen as intolerant? (Sufi) The more the Leave campaign gets intolerant, the better for Remain because voters won't be impressed (Grant).
- two most likely models, if we vote for Brexit: the Norway option or the Canada option. (Grant)
- if we Brexit, then the next two years will be chaos as companies don't know which option the UK will take. (Grant)