Five things that Brexit will change for Australians

Angus Kidman 24 June 2016


From the value of your superannuation to whether you can take a working holiday in the UK.

Britain has voted to leave the European Union (EU). That process will take time, with most experts predicting that negotiations will take more than two years. However, the impact on Australian wallets will be more immediate than that. Here are five areas where you'll notice the difference.

1. A fall in the Australian dollar

As soon as the news of Brexit was confirmed, the value of the UK pound dropped, and the value of the Australian dollar fell with it. That's bad news if you like shopping from overseas or are planning a holiday overseas.

2. A fall in share prices

"If financial markets seize up, as they did in 2008, then the big Australian banks will find it difficult to secure the vast amounts of offshore funding that they require - share prices will fall sharply and government guarantees will be called for again," Curtin University senior lecturer Lee Smales predicts. That will impact the value of your superannuation, and is likely to be a factor when the Reserve Bank meets in a fortnight to set official rates.

3. Changes to working holidays and visas

A key argument around Brexit has been levels of immigration in the UK, with calls for an "Australian-style" points system to encourage skilled immigration. That could eventually result in tighter rules than the current system, which allows people under 30 to spend a year working in the UK. While the immediate focus will be on rules controlling movement between European countries, there are likely to be implications for Australians.

4. A potential decline in British tourists

"The spending power of British tourists (last year more than 700,000 of them arrived in Australia) would be lowered," Smales predicted. Brits residing in Australia who receive a UK pension will also have less spending power with the current decline in the pound.

5. Even harder to call the Australian election

Australia itself goes to the polls on 2 July, and most polls suggest a tight contest. The impact of the Brexit decision on the Australian economy is likely to be a key point of argument in the next week. It might be the other side of the world, but we're going to hear a lot about Brexit.

Angus Kidman's Findings column looks at new developments and research that help you save money, make wise decisions and enjoy your life more. It appears Monday through Friday on

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2 Responses to Five things that Brexit will change for Australians

  1. Default Gravatar
    Ryan | June 26, 2016

    What do you think of interest rates regarding britian

    • Staff
      Shirley | June 28, 2016

      Hi Ryan,

      Thanks for your question.

      Experts are predicting that interest rates will rise as Britain’s Central Bank will attempt to appreciate it’s currency.

      DISCLAIMER: Many of the comments in this article are general in nature and anyone intending to apply the information to practical circumstances should seek professional advice to independently verify their interpretation and the information applicability to their own particular circumstances.

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