French election results show Emmanuel Macron in first place with 23.9 percent of the vote and Marine Le Pen in second with 21.4 percent, setting the stage for a run-off election on May 7. Early polls show a comfortable edge for Macron, the pro-E.U. former economy minister who ran on a campaign of ambitious economic reform including labor market deregulation and lower corporate taxes (though there will be questions about where supporters of Jean-Luc Mélenchon will land, or whether they will vote at all). While the result was expected, markets had become quite jittery in recent days and, unsurprisingly, rallied as results came in. The euro this morning is 2 percent stronger, reaching a five-month high at 1.09 to the dollar, and gold as well as other safe-haven investments have sold off. Investors are clearly relieved with the result that put Macron into the second round. But political risk is likely to remain an endemic feature in European and global markets, and European policymakers face a full calendar of challenges over the course of the year without a compelling vision about how to address the populist pressures sweeping the region.