Marie Le Pen’s staff members have admitted that they’ve met with strategists and analysts from Blackrock Inc., Barclays.Plc, UBS Group AG and some of the U.S. pension funds. While meetings between campaign officials and bank analysts are a usual procedure, it is, however, the first time that there are talks with Le Pen’s Front National (FN) party. It should be noted that there have been no talks between FN and the French central bank until now.
Talks signal the interest of established financial institutions in the plans of the candidate for the presidency of France, in case she gets elected. Marine Le Pen is preaching about the need for France to return to monetary sovereignty. The president of Front National has the opinion that France should leave the Euro-system that has harmed the economy of her country. She thinks that French citizens should have control of their central bank that, by EU rules, has been transferred to Frankfurt, Germany. Le Pen proposes replacement of the Euro currency with an assortment of new national currencies and subsequent monetary easing in order to finance debt, welfare and industry.
Bernard Monot, who is the chief economic adviser of Front National, and his aide businessman Mikael Sala are leading the talks. Monot, in one of his interviews, said that he is dealing with misconceptions and misunderstandings during his conversations with high ranking bank officials. He talked about how he creates surprise when he says that France is going to honor its signature but at the same time they will try to maintain the country’s economic stability and reassure investors and banks.
Some of the bank staff members that talked to people from Front National have reported that Le Pen’s aides are more sophisticated than expected and there is the idea that maybe the FN’s opinions reflect the reality in European Union economy. Others noted that the aides were people with serious knowledge of the market and business world but they gave the impression that they were highly ideological. This was reminiscent of Yanis Varoufakis, a Greek ex-minister of Economics that became popular for his fights with EU ministers in 2015.
Some economists say that it’s uncertain if other EU members are going to accept returning to their own currencies as Le Pen plans to propose if elected. They stress the danger of a new Franc losing a great deal of its value against the Euro because the new French Central Bank won’t be able to support it. Monot says that, in this case, France’s borrowing costs are not going to increase significantly and the new currency will help the country to finance welfare and the rebuilding of the economy.
Le Pen is leading the polls for the presidential election that will begin on in 23rd April in which she will be facing Francois Fillon of the” Les Republicains” party, Benoit Hamon of the “Parti Socialiste”, the independent Jean Luc Melenson and Emmanuel Macron of the “Assosiation pour le renouvellement de la vie politique” movement. Polls indicate that she will win the 1st round but she will lose in the second to Macron.