Would Scotland independence mean a new Scottish currency?

With a Scottish independence referendum a year away, how would this complication be handled?

UK spreadbetting and forex industry firms must be licking their chops at the prospect of Scotland launching its own currency, as Scotland nears its referendum on independence on September 18, 2014.

UK retail trading clients rank among the highest worldwide in terms of volume traded per client, and client lifetime value — one of the reasons that IG Group trades at such a significant premium multiple to its publicly traded online trading peers.

A new currency within the UK’s own borders would just provide more opportunity and incentive for UK clients to trade.

So what’s happening exactly?

Last Saturday the Scottish Government announced that it will be releasing a white paper on independence at the end of November. The document is set to contain the currency options for the potential country. Whilst the SNP (Scottish National Party) stated that it is willing to participate in a currency union with the UK, nobody has even mentioned whether in case of Scottish independence London would be keen to participate in such a union.

Would the UK Treasury be open minded enough to just say “Yes” to the Scottish “Yes” vote? Most likely the answer is a resounding “NO!”. One could even make a sound argument to Scottish politicians as to whether they need their own currency, as events in the Euro Zone have been proving that a currency union without a fiscal union is a challenging environment that undermines independence.

So what are the viable currency options for this future state? Alistair Cotton, corporate dealer at Currencies Direct, said that the issue of Scotland operating under a currency pegged to Sterling needs to be put aside to limit distractions to the referendum debates. However how can this debate happen if this issue has not been put to bed?

As the Herald Scotland reported, a couple of days ago British Labour Party politician Alistair Darling has popped the question “What’s plan B for a Scottish currency?”. While the answer might be given in the promised white paper on Scottish independence in November, according to Alistair Cotton from Currencies Direct, the creation of a central bank in Scotland will be met with substantial practical and financial hurdles, especially in the current economic climate.

As most participants in the forex business know, traders love volatility, and they are keen to exploit fundamental discrepancies… on top of it, speculators are a hungry bunch that any government hates to deal with. So the SNP better have a great solution in the works if they want their independence vote to have a chance to succeed.

For more on the global Forex industry see the LeapRate-Dow Jones Forex Industry Report. 

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