A ‘disaster for France’ if Melenchon, Le Pen go head-to-head in presidential runoff

MarketWatch/Mike Bird & Christopher Whittall/04-19-17

With the start of the French election just days away, investors are contemplating their nightmare scenario: a choice between far-left and far-right candidates.

In recent days, a surge in opinion polls has placed Jean-Luc Mélenchon, a left-wing firebrand who promises higher wages and fewer working hours, as a potential candidate to move past this Sunday’s first round of voting. That could set up a second-round vote in May 7 with Marine Le Pen, an economic nationalist who wants to pull France out of the euro.

…A runoff between Ms. Le Pen and Mr. Mélenchon “would be a disaster for France…[and] a disaster for Europe,” said Patrick Zweifel, chief economist at Pictet Asset Management.

Under that scenario, investors would dump the debt of France and of weaker European economies and send the euro sharply lower, analysts say.

PG View: Apparently some people are thinking about this possibility . . .

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