The British Prime Minister Liz Truss has announced her resignation after just 44 days in office, due to her controversial plan for the economy.
Although it was the shortest term for a British prime minister ever, it managed to leave a bad mark on the markets by shaking investor confidence at home and in the US.
Truss took office on September 6, and less than three weeks later, announced its plan to reduce the economic impact Britons are feeling from the highest inflation in decades and an energy crisis triggered by Russia’s war in Ukraine.
The plan included a $50 billion tax cut that largely benefited the UK’s richest, alarming investors who believe an increase in spending could worsen inflation, and it was unclear how the government would fund the price of the scheme, and caps on energy prices.
Truss’s plan was immediately criticized, sending bond yields higher as the market lost confidence in the government’s ability to weather the next potential recession.
UK 10-year government bond yields jumped as much as 160 basis points to 4.6%, while Truss is in power, and fell to 3.9% on last week, while the 10-year US Treasury bond rose nearly 100 basis points to a yield of 4.16% in the same date.
The situation Truss caused was described by experts as “a complete chaos” that has shaken confidence in institutions that are supposed to ensure orderly markets and stable economies.
This shake in confidence, along with persistent inflation and business data seen as a justification for further rate hikes, and the historical inverse relationship between bond yields and stock prices, has also caused stock markets to plunge.
The FTSE 100, a weighted index of the 100 largest public companies listed in London, has fallen 5% since Truss took office, while US stocks have similarly fallen, with the S&P 500 also down 5% over the same period.
Before resigning, Truss fired its finance minister and close ally Kwasi Quarting last week as her government abandoned its tax plan and mini-budget, in a face-saving move as backlash escalated.
Truss’s resignation came after a turbulent day in British politics on Wednesday, when the home secretary resigned and Conservative MPs were angry at the government’s handling of a controversial vote on fracking.
The British pound briefly fell to an all-time low against the dollar on Sept 26, falling to $1.035, and the pound has since recovered to $1.13 but is still around 20% lower than last year.