Bank governor Mark Carney 'confident' over post-Brexit trading deals
Bank of England governor Mark Carney has said he is "quite confident" that major economies will want to deepen their trading relationship with the UK after its withdrawal from the EU .
Mr Carney named his homeland of Canada alongside Australia and "a number of the big emerging markets" as countries who will want trade deals with a post-Brexit Britain.
Answering questions from a panel of children on live TV as part of the BBC School Report project, the governor said he believed his in terventions to calm the markets in the wake of the Brexit vote "definitely worked".
But he said that the morning after the June 23 referendum - when he made an immediate statement announcing that the Bank was making £250 billion available to help deal with uncertainties caused by the vote - was the "toughest day" of his career at Threadneedle Street.
In response to a wide-ranging set of questions, he also cautioned that an independent Scotland would have to give up some of its sovereignty if it wanted to continue using the pound. And he diplomatically declined to say whether he preferred to work with David Cameron or Theresa May, insisting they were "both very professional, incredibly easy to work with".
Asked where a post-Brexit UK will find trading partners, Mr Carney said: "Most countries want to trade with the UK and there are a number of countries - including my home country Canada, Australia and a number of the big emerging markets - who I am quite confident will want to have deeper trading relationships with the UK because of what the UK has to offer in business, services, manufacturing, design, culture and financial services. The opportunity is very large."
Mr Carney recalled arriving at the Bank at 3.30am after a couple of hours' sleep on the morning after the referendum.
"We had everybody in the financial world focused on this event and we had to get it right, so I felt a tremendous responsibility to make sure we had prepared properly and we executed as well as possible," he said.
"That was a strain. It's interesting, it's exciting, it's important, and I think we did absolutely get it right."
He added: "We planned for either outcome, but in order to make those plans work we needed to have a huge number of people to co-ordinate ... so that nobody noticed any ripples as a result of it.
"For that bit of it, yes, it definitely worked, because everything I said about money that was supposed to happen happened, and people could move on from there."
On the issue of Scotland's currency after a future vote for independence, the Governor said: "In order to share a currency - so, for Scotland as an independent country, if it were ever an independent country and wanted to continue to share the pound sterling - you need to share some degree of your sovereignty.
"You can't be fully independent and have a stable currency union. There's a tension between the two.
"Part of the reason for that goes back to making sure the banks are secure and stable. It is much harder to ensure that is the case if you share a currency but you don't have some common fiscal arrangements."
Responding to the awkward question of which prime minister he had found easiest to work with, he said: "They are both very professional, incredibly easy to work with, both focused on making the country better. And that holds for the chancellors that I've worked with both here and in Canada."
Mr Carney revealed that his childhood nickname was "Carnage" and said his dream job would have been an ice hockey goalkeeper. But he said that since moving to the UK he has been following football more closely than ice hockey, adopting Everton as his team.
In a quick-fire round of questions from the children, he named the Great British Bake Off as his TV guilty pleasure, 1981 war drama Gallipoli as his favourite film and pizza as his favourite food.
Asked whether he preferred Mercury Prize-winning grime artist Skepta or R&B singer Craig David, he was momentarily stumped before naming as an alternative the 1980s ska band The Specials.
He could not remember what the most expensive luxury he had ever bought was, but asked how much money he had on him, replied: "I have a fiver in my pocket and about 40 quid in my bag."
He admitted he "didn't follow my own advice" on financial prudence when he was younger and lost money by failing to shop around for the best interest rates on loans.
Asked whether he was a dog or cat person, Mr Carney said: "Dog, but I have a cat because I am outvoted in the household."
And he said the worst part of his job was having to give up so many of his weekends to international conferences, but acknowledged that this was not much of a hardship, telling the children: "Even the worst things are pretty good."