The United Kingdom - home to the CMBS and RMBS juggernaut as well as to London, Europe's financial capital - has a new leader. But the new prime minister, Gordon Brown, is not an average run-of-the-mill replacement for Tony Blair. Brown is a money man who formerly held the position of Chancellor of the Exchequer and is known for making big changes whenever he joins a new office - be it a change in the way interest rates are determined or announcing new taxes for private equity houses.
So it is only natural that, as Brown moves into 10 Downing Street, structured market players have begun to run the gamut of "what if" scenarios, with the biggest being the future of the almighty Great British pound. Many people had something to say about the impact of the abolishment of the pound on ABS, but most would speak only off the record. At least two U.K.-based banks, however, are said to be already running models of how firms will react when, and not if, the country moves from pound to euro.