The property market is no stranger to volatility, but a vote to leave the EU, a snap General Election and the unlikely triumph of Donald Trump – to name a few – certainly created a unique cocktail of challenges. Looking across the Channel to the French Presidential campaigns, a possible Le Pen win had been viewed by many as a Black Swan event; the third ‘great shock’ to the western political establishment. Macron’s success, therefore, seems to have bought with it a sense of stability. Yes, he has made it clear he wants to see London’s top financial talent head over to a more accommodating Paris in the wake of the EU referendum, but he has also seems to have no interest in a hard Brexit, stressing the importance of the close economic ties.
The figures, at least in the short term, speak for themselves: following the win, the benchmark European property sector index reached an eight-month high, and companies with strong links to France performed well. In London, Intu Properties, Land Securities, British Land and Hammerson all rose. Whatever the polls may say, there really is no knowing what will happen in the UK on June 8 and the Brexit negotiations are going to be relatively drawn out. That said, the French property market has begun to show signs of improvement in recent months and generally, Macron’s victory is currently viewed as positive for the sector over there. In the spirit of collaboration, we can only hope this attitude continues to filter across to the UK.