What Brexit means for America and Puerto Rico

by | Jun 30, 2016 | Economy, Headlines | Comments

Overnight the United Kingdom has become a wild entity throwing most of the world’s economy into confusion, and making its own future very unsure. By leaving the European Union, the UK is abandoning security and economic structures that have held the continent together. This will mean changes in trade, immigration and travel as well as negotiations but the exit will have even more sustentative changes as time goes on. The effect of this vote on the United States is already visible. Both the dollar and the yen have surged in comparison to both the pound and the euro, which will ultimately hurt the countries’ exports since they will be more expensive for the now sensitive european countries.

Relative insecurity will take over the market and while there is no current reason for panic, a statement may be issued by the leading developed countries stating an intent of action against  the economic volatility. Chairwoman of the US Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen, stated, “The U.K. vote to exit the European Union could have significant economic repercussions, [brexit would] usher in a period of uncertainty” and,“negatively affect financial conditions and the U.S. economy.” (Talley n.pg.). Investment in the hours after the announcement of the results has shown a trend in buying safe-assets which means gold as well as the dollar. The US gained nearly 3% at one point making it the largest gain in decades, however this only re enforces the uncertainty and lack of control on the economic situation. Puerto Rico, however, will be essentially unaffected by this transition considering its place in the world economy as a United States jurisdiction. Its territorial status keeps Puerto Rico isolated from larger trade and global activities such as this since it is tied to America through many laws, yet lacks major economic power of its own.

Brexit will not only have an economic effect around the world but also a political one. Policies between many countries and the EU are expected the shift and again a layer of uncertainty clouds the future. Without the UK in the EU, America loses its main ally with influence on continental European affairs. European countries could also become less politically stable with this change. That means less focus on international issues including migration, violence in Syria as well as global trade.

All of these factors ultimately alter and affect America’s influence in the region and exactly what will result from this change is yet to be discovered. America’s relationship with Britain itself could change as it looks for other allies within the EU to keep a strong tie to the institution. Hopefully, however, America will find a way to remain close friends with Britain and find another form of support within the EU. This could result in stabilizing the region and finding a new balance within the international arena.