Why did the pound gain after May's Brexit defeat?

Theresa May Image copyright Getty Images

The markets were prepared for her to lose - but the scale of her defeat took most by surprise.

But more surprising still was the fact that the pound - the first financial responder to political events - gained in value after the vote - despite many, most, confidently predicting a crushing defeat would send it down.

So what to make of it? Using the benefit of hindsight, some are saying that the recent display of animosity in the House of Commons to the idea of a no-deal Brexit, something markets are most wary of - has convinced them that outcome is very unlikely.

The other new line is that this crushing defeat for her Brexit deal, makes no Brexit - at least not on 29 March - a growing possibility.

That's financial markets, which respond in seconds. Real businesses are not so sure.

With 72 days to go before the UK is due to leave the EU another milestone has come and gone with the future no clearer and planning for no deal more urgent.

As one exasperated business group said tonight, politicians are playing a "high stakes game of political poker" with the future of the UK economy.

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