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Pound slides as investors watch Brexit showdown

(AP) – Mounting concern among international investors about Brexit has pushed the pound to its lowest level since a “flash crash” it endured in October 2016, when uncertainty after the Brexit vote was particularly high.

The currency fell as low as $1.1960 on Tuesday, down about a cent on the day before stabilizing around $1.1990. Not counting the brief slide in the autumn of 2016, in which the currency fell around 6% in a matter of minutes before recovering, the pound is now at its lowest level since 1985.

Brexit is facing a crucial few days as lawmakers challenge Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s insistence that the U.K. will leave the European Union on Oct. 31 even without a deal.

Parliament is returning from its summer recess Tuesday with a key piece of legislation on its agenda that would prevent an immediate no-deal exit. If it passes, Johnson’s Downing Street office says he’ll call an early election, with uncertain consequences.

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