European Union in focus as French presidential candidates face off
This is still well within the margin of error, so the prospect of Far Left and Far Right second round run-off in May can not be ruled out. "The reality is that immigration is massive in our country and that migration flood that we are experiencing is not a fantasy", Le Pen told RTL radio on Tuesday as she fleshed out details of the moratorium announcement.
Veteran centrist Francois Bayrou, who has backed Macron, warned Wednesday that several possibilities were possible for the run-off vote on May 7. Ms Le Pen stayed on with her father as her parents' bitter, public divorce played out - her mother even posed naked in the French edition of Playboy.
Fillon's margin of victory over Le Pen is seen as the smallest, so investors may find this second-round scenario more chilling than the above pairing. This would have significant ramifications for global financial markets.
Macron would win a head-to-head contest against National Front chief Le Pen, the poll showed. Added to this, Macron's supporters tend to waver the most.
"It is unlikely that the French electorate will accept the European authorities' constraints or regressive reforms indefinitely", said Mark Weisbrot CEPR co-director and lead author of the report. The correlation between the French bond yield and EUR/USD has also risen to -53%, so when the bond yield rises the euro tends to fall half of the time, and vice versa.
This was, until late January, seen as the most likely outcome.
The EUs unelected executive is quietly terrified that a Le Pen presidency could bring the European project to a screeching halt.
To support those objectives, Le Pen promises to increase French defense spending to 3 percent of GDP (the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation target is 2 percent), while making it clear to voters that none of that spending would support stabilization missions in Africa.
But the National Front leader has been under pressure since the start of April as conservative Francois Fillon and far-leftist Jean-Luc Melenchon closed the gap on the favourites.
"Marine will be able to get the country back on its feet".
For the euro, the tension remains high, but at least Macron remains the leader and Melenchon is on the bottom.
This result is still a possibility as we edge closer to Election Day, and would be the most market friendly in our view.
What is perhaps most disconcerting for the EU's future stability is that both far-left and far-right candidates-Mélenchon and Le Pen-are fervent critics of the political union.
EUR/USD was trading around 1.0720, quite steadily.
When Ms Le Pen was 16, her mother left with a lover and cut off contact with her daughter for 15 years.
After a string of Islamist-inspired assaults in France since 2015, security concerns moved to the centre of the campaign Tuesday following the arrests of two French men suspected of preparing an attack to disrupt the election.
The candidates have increased security in recent days.
Opinion polls make independent centrist Emmanuel Macron the favorite.