Soros misses Brexit boat by not betting against pound

Soros misses Brexit boat by not betting against pound
George Soros, who nearly broke the Bank of England in 1992 by betting against the pound, missed his opportunity this time around. A spokesman said he didn't speculate against the British currency ahead of the UK’s EU referendum.

“In fact, he was long on the British pound leading up to the vote,” the representative said, pointing out that George Soros profited from other investments, without specifying details.

Two days before the world-shaking vote the man, who made billions by betting against sterling in 1992, said that the decision to leave the EU would cause a bigger and more damaging fall of the British currency, sparking a second “black Friday” for the UK. Soros expected the pound to drop 15-20 percent.

“I would expect this devaluation to be bigger and also more disruptive than the 15 percent devaluation that occurred in September 1992, when I was fortunate enough to make a substantial profit for my hedge fund investors at the expense of the Bank of England and the British government,” Mr. Soros told The Guardian.

On Friday, sterling had its worst single-day fall against the US dollar, at one point losing 10 percent of its value, dropping as low as $1.30 against the greenback. The pound continued to reel on Monday, dropping another three percent against the US currency - its lowest level since September 1985.

Whatever opportunity Soros missed by failing to predict Brexit, he made up for in commodities trading.

Earlier this year, the billionaire cut his US stock investments by a third and invested in gold and bought shares in gold mines.

READ MORE: Soros dumps US stocks, buys gold

The precious metal surged 4.8 percent on Friday, its biggest one-day gain since January 2009. Brexit triggered a mass selloff of riskier assets and investment in safe haven commodities such as gold.

Gold continued to rise on Monday, trading near two-year highs at $1,330 per troy ounce.

Editor’s note: Some readers have suggested the use of the term ‘pound of flesh’ in the original headline to this story was actually a reference to Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice and the controversial character Shylock. We want to assure readers that the double meaning was not intended. But as we do not wish to offend, and want to avoid an uncomfortable misinterpretation, we decided to rewrite the headline. RT categorically rejects and despises anti-Semitism in all its forms. In the case of George Soros, we are not interested in his religion or ethnicity, only in his often controversial deeds.