A wave of euphoria greeted Emmanuel Macron’s narrow victory in the first round of France’s presidential election last week. Markets and pundits alike cheered, taking the outcome as yet another sign that Europe’s populist threat – which only a few months ago looked as if it might swallow the continent whole – was nothing more than a paper tiger. Talk of France possibly departing the European Union has died down and European stock markets have rallied.
Macron, a one-time Socialist cabinet minister who broke with his party to run for president as an independent, will now face Marine Le Pen of the right-wing National Front in a runoff election on May 7.
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