Merkel urges speedy Brexit talks after United Kingdom vote

Labour's Jeremy Corbyn has momentum. Source Getty

The shock of a result that raises questions about how Britain will advance with its plan to leave the European Union, and whether any party can form a stable government, initially sank the pound by 2 percent against both the dollar and euro.

With trading volumes extremely thin out of London hours, London stock exchange futures fell around 0.3 percent, while 10-year United Kingdom government bond yields dipped 5 basis points to below 1 percent.

The Prime Minster lost her majority in the Commons, but was still able to form a Government as the largest party.

"But obviously while also asserting the interests of the 27 member states that will make up the European Union in future", she added.

"Britain is a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, so we have a lot of shared challenges to deal with, and that's the spirit we want to carry out these negotiations in".

Betting agencies were already taking wagers on whether May would still have her job by the end of the day.

Versus the euro, the pound also fell more than 1.1% to 1.13 euros, to levels not seen since January.

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There was much less drama elsewhere, as the Japanese yen gave up early gains and eased to 110.38 per dollar.

US crude futures edged up 10 cents to $45.76 a barrel, with Brent crude at $47.95.

The single currency had slipped overnight when the European Central Bank cut forecasts for inflation and said it had not discussed scaling back its massive bond-buying campaign, sending bond yields to multi-month lows.

"While some have argued that a softer Brexit might ameliorate the downside, there is still the prospect of the contents of the Labour party manifesto", said Michael Hewson, chief analyst with CMC Markets in London.

Overnight, Wall Street had also seemingly judged that the testimony of former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey was not life-threatening for the administration of President Donald Trump.

The Dow rose 0.04 percent, while the S&P 500 gained 0.03 percent and the Nasdaq Composite 0.39 percent. Safe-haven gold and US Treasuries drifted lower and futures markets pointed to Wall Street opening modestly higher.

US crude futures edged down 2 cents to $45.62 a barrel, with Brent crude flat at $47.86.