One of the world's best known investors and commentator, George Soros, has warned of the dire consequences facing the UK if it votes to leave the European Union on Thursday.
Speaking to The Guardian, Mr Soros said the impact on the pound would be greater than when Britain fell out of the Exchange Rate Mechanism 24 years ago. If the UK votes to leave, there would be a "Black Friday" for sterling.
Soros became a billionaire by betting on the devaluation of the pound, and while he said some will stand to benefit immensely banking on a Brexit, it would leave “most voters considerably poorer”.
“Sterling is almost certain to fall steeply and quickly if leave wins the referendum,” Soros said. “I would expect this devaluation to be bigger and also more disruptive than the 15% devaluation that occurred in September 1992, when I was fortunate enough to make a substantial profit for my hedge fund investors at the expense of the Bank of England and the British government.”
After the UK left the ERM, interest rates were cut from 10% to 5.5%, helping businesses and consumers to cope financially. But with interest rates already at the record low of 0.5%, Mr Soros said there is very little the Bank of England could do to protect the public if the economy went into recession.
He said: “Too many believe that a vote to leave will have no effect on their personal financial positions. This is wishful thinking. If Britain leaves the EU it will have at least one very clear and immediate effect that will touch every household: the value of the pound would decline precipitously. A vote to leave the EU would also have an immediate and dramatic impact on financial markets, investment, prices and jobs.
“A vote to leave could see the week end with a black Friday and serious consequences for ordinary people."
Last week, the pound and FTSE 100 dropped sharply after polls put the 'Leave' campaign ahead by a few points. But with the latest polls suggesting 'Remain' is back in the lead, markets reversed those losses on Monday.