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As Scotland rejects independence, businesses and investors breathe sigh of relief

Ballot boxes are opened as counting begins in the Scottish Independence Referendum for the Aberdeenshire Council area, Aberdeen, Scotland, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014. As the polls closed late Thursday and the vote counting began, many Scots settled in to stay up all night in homes and bars to watch the results. A nationwide count began immediately at 32 regional centers across Scotland. (AP Photo/Scott Heppell)

Ballot boxes are opened as counting begins in the Scottish Independence Referendum for the Aberdeenshire Council area, Aberdeen, Scotland, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014. As the polls closed late Thursday and the vote counting began, many Scots settled in to stay up all night in homes and bars to watch the results. A nationwide count began immediately at 32 regional centers across Scotland. (AP Photo/Scott Heppell)  (The Associated Press)

Businesses and investors have reacted with relief to Scotland's decision to reject independence from the United Kingdom.

With all but one of the 32 Scottish councils having declared, the No campaign won 55.4 percent of the votes cast in Thursday's referendum. The 10-point victory margin was wider than expected — most opinion polls on the eve of the vote showed a narrower 4-point victory.

British stocks responded positively to the news Friday, with the FTSE 100 index up 0.7 percent in early trading. Royal Bank of Scotland PLC, which is majority-owned by the U.K. government, was up over 4 percent and said it was "business as usual" for its customers.

In the currency markets, the pound was solid too, rising to a two-year high against the euro.