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Euro jumps as Macron emerges as favorite to lead France

24 April 2017

With Le Pen wanting France to leave the European Union and Macron wanting even closer cooperation among the bloc's 28 nations, Sunday's outcome means the May 7 runoff will have undertones of a referendum on France's European Union membership.

Riots erupted in different cities of France including Paris and Nantes against results of first round of Presidential election as Far-right National Front managed to qualify for run-off elections of May 7, 2017.

And as Reuters reports, a new servey by Harris puts the likelyhood of Macron becoming the next French president at 64 percent.

Le Pen may be able to count on the greater enthusiasm of her longstanding supporters as compared with the coalition of unusual bedfellows and newcomers Macron - who was a relative unknown until he formed his movement only a year ago - will need to win.

However, it was also a success for Le Pen, who has spent years attempting to rid the Front National of the toxic legacy of her father. Her proposals to tax French companies that hire foreigners and companies that relocate jobs outside of France would make attracting the best and brightest all but impossible for French businesses.

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Nearly 47 million French people, at home and overseas, voted in the first round of the country's presidential election - a high turnout that surprised many pollsters.

On Sunday, French voters favored two very different contenders to proceed to the next round, on May 7: the centrist, pro-Europe newcomer Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, leader of the far-right National Front, who has promised a Frexit referendum.

And with her ascension she strived to modernise the largely anti-immigration policies wrapped in often racist and anti-semitic language of the colourful Jean-Marie Le Pen.

Bernard Cazeneuve, the sitting Socialist prime minister, called Ms. Le Pen's project "dangerous and sectarian" and said it would "impoverish, isolate and divide" the country.

The second round, it said, is "set to oppose two visions of France - one inclusive and open to the world and its concerns, and the other cut off behind its borders and its old myths". For example, she believes that Jews should give up wearing a kippah in public. She says European Union membership has stripped France of its autonomy, on topics including immigration, monetary, and fiscal policy.

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When was the last time a kippah concealed a bomb or a gun? In many ways, his triumph is far more remarkable than Le Pen's.

Ms. Le Pen has also downplayed the role of France's Vichy government in the roundup and deportation of Jews to concentration camps during the Nazi occupation. However, to be fair, Mr. Macron is not without his own biases and expression of moral equivalency.

In further signs of market enthusiasm EUR/USD and US SP500 futures are up more than 1% this morning.

Not being from a political party, how will Emmanuel Macron ensure a majority in parliament? The populist movement has already suffered recent defeats in Austria and the Netherlands.

France's legislative election in June now takes on a vital importance, with huge questions about whether Le Pen and even the more moderate Macron will be able to rally sufficient lawmakers to their causes. However, Germany's federal election will be held in September.

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A comment piece in Australia's Sydney Morning Herald, meanwhile, called the election results "a political earthquake". If she were successful, it would probably sink an institution that has helped bind Europe together for decades.

Euro jumps as Macron emerges as favorite to lead France