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European powers demanded a quick divorce Saturday as Britain's seismic vote to abandon the EU sparked bitter break-up rows at home and abroad. Britons had cast aside warnings of isolation and economic disaster to vote 52 percent-48 percent in favour of quitting the European Union in the June 23 referendum. The historic vote, fought on the battlefronts of the economy and immigration, toppled Prime Minister David Cameron, pounded sterling and led Moody's to downgrade Britain's credit rating outlook to "negative".
From clothing chain stores to automakers, the big names of "Corporate USA" have long flocked to Britain, attracted by its tax advantages and a common language, and by the prospect of accessing the European Union market and its hundreds of millions of consumers. Unsurprisingly, several large US companies had previously voiced support for Britain to remain in the EU ahead of Thursday's historic referendum that ended with the opposite, unexpected decision: the first exit of a country from the bloc. With $56.1 billion in exports in 2015, Britain is the main destination for US goods in the 28-nation European Union.