Brexit highlights special Utah, UK relationship

Posted at 5:55 PM, Jun 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-24 19:57:00-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- Utah World Trade Center Director Derek Miller tells FOX 13 that the United Kingdom is Utah’s biggest international trading partner, making the UK election to leave the European Union particularly important to the Beehive State.

The most significant player in the Utah-UK relationship is Rio Tinto, the global mining conglomerate that owns and operates the Bingham Canyon Mine and owns much of the remaining open property in the Salt Lake Valley.

It’s unclear how Brexit will impact global trade, much of which depends on how amicable or hostile the grand European divorce becomes.

That said, there are some clear short-term impacts for individual Utahns.

First, a strong dollar compared to the Pound and Euro could impact your spending decisions, says Josh Green, Head Trader for the Utah based currency trading firm GPS Capital Management.

“If you're gonna take a trip to the UK, or you're thinking about taking a trip, you may want to take it now," Green said. "It's 10 percent cheaper today than it was yesterday."

That weak pound will also make British imports less expensive. So, if you’ve been saving up for a Jaguar or a Savile Row suit, now may be the time.

The second short-term impact is obvious at stock exchanges around the world. International markets hate uncertainty, and if you’re prone to anxiety, you may not want to log into your 401K for a while.