What are the odds of the UK leaving the EU anytime soon? 20% say bookies.
Has Jean Claude Juncker’s nomination pushed the UK nearer to an EU exit?
Maybe a little, but even so, it’s still fairly unlikely to happen during this decade. What are the odds?
First, we’d almost certainly need a referendum. Ladbrokes make that an odds-against chance before 2018, and if it hasn’t happened by then, it almost certainly won’t before the subsequent general election.
So, based on those odds, I am going to assign a 40% probability to a referendum happening.
Then, the UK population have to decide to vote to leave.
Let’s go with a 50% chance of a decision to exit. I don’t think that is a particularly generous assessment, given that it’s quite likely that the leadership of all the main parties will be campaigning for remaining a member. Most major business interests are likely to be on the same side.
So, taking just those two conditions together, we’ve got a probability of 0.4 x 0.5 = 0.2 i.e. 20%. Which is perhaps a little less likely than you might imagine had you been reading certain commentators in today’s papers.