Speed Reads

Brexit fallout

As pound continues to plummet, U.K. Treasury chief tries to calm everyone down

Even as Britain's pound plummeted to a 31-year low, U.K. Treasury Chief George Osborne remained optimistic about the state of the economy post-Brexit. In his first appearance since the historic decision Thursday to leave the European Union, Osborne assured Britain on Monday that its current situation was nowhere near as bad as it was in 2008, at the start of the financial crisis. "It will not be plain sailing in the days ahead," Osborne said. "But let me be clear: You should not underestimate our resolve. We were prepared for the unexpected."

Osborne's speech came as the British pound traded at around $1.320 early Monday morning, slightly down from Friday when it dropped to $1.3224 — the lowest the currency has fallen in 31 years. The Associated Press reports that some companies are rumored to be planning a Brexit of their own, and "looking to move business out of the country." Meanwhile, stock markets across Europe have declined.

Despite the situation, Osborne promised Monday that he would not impose an austerity budget. Following Britain's vote Thursday, he said that he has been working with Bank of England Governor Mark Carney, as well as "fellow financial ministers and international organizations," The Associated Press reports. "We are prepared for whatever happens," Osborne said.