Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen are thought to be the frontrunners, but RBC says Le Pen will lose
Analysts at RBC Capital Markets say there is less than a 0.1 per cent chance of the Front National leader becoming France’s premier after two rounds of elections in April and May.
Because of this the Euro should be weaker than it currently is, the analysts said.
Lisa Lignos from RBC wrote in a note seen by Pound Sterling Live: “It may sound foolhardy given the experience of Trump and Brexit, but we think markets are overpricing the probability of a Le Pen victory in the second round.”
We think markets are overpricing the probability of a Le Pen victory in the second round
Lisa Lignos, RBC Capital
The French electoral system works by voters picking their favourite candidate in the first round, with the top two going through to the second round a week later and the candidate with the most votes wins.
RBC believes the mainly positive predictions for Ms Le Pen are because analysts have not taken into account there are two rounds of voting.
RBC thinks other analysts have not taken France's two-round system into account
Right-wing Ms Le Pen is up against Republican candidate Francois Fillon and Emmanuel Macron who left President Francois Hollande’s Socialist Party last year to establish his own independent movement, En Marche! (On the Move).
Latest polls see him scooping 65 per cent of the votes to see of Ms Le Pen, however Mr Macron has faced strong criticism this week for calling French colonialism a “crime against humanity” during a visit to Algeria.
RBC Capital analysts believe Ms Le Pen’s chances are even slimmer at less than 0.1 per cent.
However Bloomberg’s latest “Odds Checker” estimates the anti-migration politician has a 34 per cent chance of winning – a jump of nine per cent since January 31.
The Euro should be weaker than it is, RCB analysts said
RCB believes analysts are being cautious because of Trump and Brexit predictions being wrong
JP Morgan has forecast a 10 per cent fall in the Euro if Ms Le Pen wins, however if RBC’s prediction is correct then the Euro would soar quickly if she loses.
A report by British think-tank Demos into populism in Europe, found French voters are highly likely to vote tactically against Ms Le Pen.
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In past elections, this has been exactly the case, with Front National not doing well in the second round of voting due to tactical voting.
Ms Lignos, added: “Since Marine Le Pen took over as leader of the Front National, France has held seven elections.
“FN has always struggled in two-round votes, even when there are more than two candidates in the second round.”
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