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Summary

  1. Emmanuel Macron defeats Marine Le Pen to win French presidency
  2. He won over 66% of the vote
  3. Macron set up his centrist En Marche movement only 13 months ago
  4. He has promised to fight division and promote hope and reconciliation
  5. Marine Le Pen hailed a "historic, massive result" for the far right
  6. Turnout was around 74%, the lowest for a run-off in almost 50 years

Live Reporting

By Laurence Peter and Tom Spender

All times stated are UK

Au revoir

Macron
Getty Images

That brings to an end our live coverage of the French presidential election - won decisively by centrist Emmanuel Macron. We hope you have enjoyed our updates.

In today's developments:

  • Mr Macron will be formally sworn in as president on 14 May  
  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel hailed his win, saying he had run a "courageous pro-European campaign"
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin called for France and Russia to "overcome mutual mistrust"
  • Anti-capitalist activists in Paris demonstrated against Mr Macron
  • Mr Macron's new movement En Marche was rebranded as La République en Marche and he stepped down as leader to be replaced by Catherine Barbaroux
  • The movement announced it would field 577 candidates in legislative elections, 50% of whom will be from civil society and 50% of whom will be women
  • Candidates running under the En Marche banner will not have to give up their affiliation to the main parties of the left and right but will not be able to stand for two parties at the same time

Read more of the BBC's comprehensive French election coverage:

Confusion over new party name

En Marche is henceforth to be known as La République en Marche! - and the rebrand has caused a bit of confusion.

One reporter wanted to know whether it would be known by the acronym LREM or REM - but tweeted that he had not had a response along with the hashtag #LosingMyReligion, a reference to the US pop group REM's song of the same name.

View more on twitter

Meanwhile French news agency AFP initially tweeted that the new name was La République ne Marche! - one possible translation of which would be "The republic isn't working". It quickly corrected its error and the original tweet has since been deleted.  

tweet
@AFPFR

Who is Catherine Barbaroux?

Catherine Barbaroux
AFP

Catherine Barbaroux, who has been named as En Marche's interim president, is a little-known figure on the French political scene. Ms Barbaroux, 67, worked in the environment and commerce ministries in the 1980s and her current post is head of a micro-credit organisation. 

What now for Macron?

What now for French president Emmanuel Macron?

The centrist won the presidential election, so what are the key issues that he will likely face as France's leader?

Macron behind the scenes

Mr Macron's official photographer, Soazig de la Moissonnière, has posted a few photos she has taken of the president-elect on her Twitter feed.

They include black-and-white shots of Mr Macron as he walks out to speak to supporters at the Louvre on Sunday evening before being joined on stage by his wife.

Others show Mr Macron earlier in the campaign. 

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

'Half of En Marche candidates from civil society'

Ferrand
Reuters
Mr Ferrand has been giving more details of En Marche's plans

Mr Macron's En Marche movement will field 577 candidates in June's legislative election, secretary-general Richard Ferrand says.

Half will be from civil society and half will be women, he said at a press conference.

Mr Ferrand also said that parliamentary candidates running under the En Marche banner will not be asked to quit their previous political parties (if they are from the Socialists or the Republicans) but must not have a criminal record.

However, candidates from other parties will not be able to run for both En Marche and their other party at the same time, Mr Ferrand said.

The 577 candidates will be announced before 11 May, he said.

What next for Macron after win?

Hundreds join rally against Macron

Protesters in Paris. 8 May 2017
getty
Demonstrators take part in a trade unions protest against the election of Emmanuel Marcon on May 8, 2017 in Paris
Getty Images
Police control demonstrators on a trade unions protest against the election of Emmanuel Macron on May 8, 2017 in Paris
Getty Images

Police were out in force as hundreds of people led by the powerful CGT trade union joined a rally in Paris in protest against Mr Macron's planned labour reforms.

BreakingNew En Marche leader announced

Richard Ferrand, secretary-general of Mr Macron's En Marche movement, says that Catherine Barbaroux, an experienced figure on the political scene, will be En Marche's new president.

Mr Macron has stepped down from the leadership, Mr Ferrand said.

The movement is also to be rebranded La République en Marche! - The Republic on the move - he said.

View more on twitter

What do the French press think?

Right-wing daily Le Figaro says that on the surface Mr Macron has scored a "total triumph" and he will hope to be a "youthful reformer" in the mould of former French president Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, former US president John F Kennedy, Canadian leader Justin Trudeau or Italy's former prime minister Matteo Renzi. 

But the newspaper has a warning for his supporters:

Those who see Macron as a superstar, as a breath of fresh air, need to watch out. Look closer, and you’ll see that the extraordinary circumstances of this election mean there’s a lot of pressure on him, especially as his electoral base is so slim. He’s the candidate of the rejection of everyone else.

Yes, he did well to capitalise on his opponents’ weaknesses but no-one believes he has unified people around himself or his programme. This doesn’t take away from his legitimacy but it does present political problems. This France - an open, European, reforming one - nonetheless only represents a quarter of the French people."

Left-wing daily Le Mondesays Mr Macron's win - along with recent results in the Netherlands and Austria - shows that the far-right is not on the verge of taking power in Europe.

However, it says, there is no room for complacency because the campaign showed French society to be "balkanised" and its different factions "ever less willing to make the compromises that allow them to work together".

The newspaper says:

The optimistic new president of this country in depression must quickly show that he has got the message of this unusual campaign. For starters, when setting up his teams, he must not fail in the areas that saw his competitors fall away - probity, competency and attention to a social crisis that did not get less serious on 7 May."

Left-wing daily Libération meanwhile has an editorial saying that while the National Front (FN) was defeated, the party has in fact scored a marked "political and cultural" victory.

This is because, says author Béligh Nabli from the Institute of International and Strategic Relations (Iris), the far-right is continuing to score better and better in successive elections and break every new "glass ceiling" that is placed in its way.

He says:

A self-absorbed ethnocentrism is being born, a dogmatic view of the cultural and social order is emerging, including in the left's republican rigidity."

This is blurring the boundaries between established left-wing, right-wing and far-right views, he says.  

'France spends too much' - Juncker

Juncker
AFP/Getty

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has warned Mr Macron that France is spending too much money.

Speaking in Berlin, he said:

With France, we have a particular problem... The French spend too much money and they spend too much in the wrong places. This will not work over time."

Mr Juncker said France was using between 53% and 57% of its GDP on public spending and this could not continue given the country's "relatively high" levels of debt.

France has long suffered a stubbornly high unemployment rate of about 10%, something Mr Macron has vowed to tackle.

What are Emmanuel Macron's economic plans?

Le Pen's party 'optimistic'

French National Front official 'optimistic for future'

One of the youngest regional leaders of the National Front is 29-year-old Edwige Diaz in southwestern France.

She tells the BBC why she is optimistic for the future of the party despite the result.

'No to francs!'

Nice-Matin newspaper has published a photo of a 10-euro note placed in the ballot box instead of a vote by one member of the electorate.

On it, the citizen has written an eccentric note giving a somewhat reluctant endorsement to the eventual winner, Mr Macron.

The note reads: "Proud of my euros! No to francs! No to Marine! Bankers are good! No to Emmanuel but you will be a good president, Mr Macron."

On the back is a message saying that if the election officials hand the 10-euro note to Nice-Matin newspaper he will make a donation to a foundation in support of racing driver Jules Bianchi, who was from Nice and died in a crash in 2014. The voter also adds a message of support for a French second division football team.

View more on twitter

Cazeneuve rules himself out

Cazeneuve
AFP/Getty

The current French Prime Minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, has ruled himself out of any role in Mr Macron's government.

"The new president wants renewal," he said, according to Les Echos newspaper. "I understand that very well and I find it legitimate."

What Trump said and what he may really think

BBC North America Correspondent Anthony Zurcher writes...

Trump
AFP

What he said: "Congratulations to Emmanuel Macron on his big win today as the next President of France. I look very much forward to working with him!"

Behind the quote: Donald Trump congratulated Emmanuel Macron in a very Trump-like way, praising his "big win". If there's one thing Mr Trump loves, it's big winners.

It's hard to believe that the president is thrilled with the results, however. Just a few weeks ago he had said French nationalist Marine Le Pen was the strongest candidate, who was tough on "radical Islamic terrorism".

A Le Pen victory would have been cited as evidence of a nativist movement sweeping the western world, validating Mr Trump's election.

Instead the president and his supporters are shrugging off the French results and eying battles to come.

What world leaders said about Macron's win - and what they think

Watch: French Londoners on the result

London has more French citizens than a number of French cities. Steph McGovern has been finding out what some of them think of the result.

Germany’s tough choice

The BBC's Damien McGuinness in Berlin writes...

Angela Merkel is delighted that Mr Macron has won but now Germany faces a conundrum. 

Mr Macron wants more help for struggling eurozone economies, such as an EU fund, a eurozone tax or shared liabilities. That means primarily money from German taxpayers.

With previous French promises of economic reform unfulfilled, that’s hardly a vote winner. In a bid to revive flagging poll numbers, the Eurosceptic populist AfD party is already whipping up fears that German taxpayers will have to dig deep. 

But if Germany doesn’t help, and Mr Macron fails, the worry for Berlin is that Marine Le Pen could win next time. It’s almost an impossible choice between emboldening Eurosceptics in France or in Germany. 

Having eyed with horror the possibility of a Le Pen presidency, there is a growing awareness in Berlin of the importance of helping France and the EU. Mrs Merkel just needs to convince German voters of that. And Mr Macron will have to prove to her that he can push through reforms.

Anatomy of a landslide

As these maps show, Mr Macron's support was strongest in Paris and western France, while Ms Le Pen's was strongest in the north-east and southern France.

But Mr Macron received less than half of the vote in just five of the country's départements (administrative areas).

Map of macron results
BBC
map of le pen results
BBC

Anti-EU solidarity for Le Pen

Nigel Farage, an MEP for the anti-EU UKIP party, thinks Macron - passionately pro-EU - will bring "five years of failure", giving nationalist Marine Le Pen the chance to win in 2022. He had previously described the National Front candidate as "the real deal".

Another anti-EU campaigner, Geert Wilders of the Dutch Freedom Party (PVV), also addressed a morale-boosting tweet to Ms Le Pen, saying "millions of patriots" had voted for her.

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How French expatriates voted

Turnout was under 50% - much lower than that seen within France - but those who did vote decisively chose Mr Macron.

He got almost 90% of the 550,000 votes cast abroad - significantly more than the 65% vote share he got overall.

Ms Le Pen got just over 10% of votes cast abroad, compared to 35% overall.

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Hollywood celebrates result

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Numerous big names from the world of entertainment have been praising the result on social media, and Paris Match magazine has compiled a few.

They include pop queen Madonna, who posted a video showing children partying in a kitchen and said "Vive la France!"

Star Wars actor Mark Hamill posted a picture of the French tricolour, as did Mia Farrow.

Singers Katy Perry and Cher and actor Ewan McGregor all congratulated France on the result.

And comedian Seth Myers went as far as saying he would begin calling chips French fries again rather than "freedom fries" - a name adopted by some in the US in 2003 after France refused to take part in the invasion of Iraq by US and UK forces.

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Anti-Macron march under way

That didn't take long. 

An anti-capitalist demonstration against Macron has set off from the Place de la République in Paris.

Demonstrators chanted "En marche, en marche arrière" - On the move, in reverse gear - a pun on the name of Macron's En Marche movement.

One protester held up a placard bearing another pun - "En Marx", referring to the father of communism, Karl Marx.

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View more on twitter
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Merkel hails 'spectacular' victory

Merkel
Getty Images

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said she is very pleased about Mr Macron's "spectacular" victory, praising what she called his brave pro-European campaign. 

She said:

He ran a courageous pro-European campaign, stands for openness to the world and is committed decisively to a social market economy."

Mrs Merkel said the two would meet soon and that Germany wanted to help France with issues such as cutting youth unemployment, but that didn't necessarily mean changing German policies.

She also said Franco-German co-operation was a "cornerstone" of German foreign policy.

However, she rejected suggestions that her country should do more to support Europe's economy by cutting its trade surplus, saying export levels were based on the high quality of German products and European Central Bank policy.

The BBC's Damien McGuinness in Berlin says many Germans are wary of Mr Macron's call for greater shared responsibility within the eurozone, in case that means German taxpayers in effect being asked to help underwrite the French economy.

That won't be popular, particularly in an election year, our correspondent says, and Berlin will need to see evidence that Mr Macron is serious about economic reforms - before necessarily giving his ideas the green light.

A spokeswoman for Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble said there were many things to discuss with his French counterpart, including "strengthening the eurozone economically as well as its governing structures". 

Read our in-depth coverage

Macron arrives at campaign HQ
Reuters

It's the day after the night before - and the BBC has comprehensive coverage.

Algerian leader congratulates Macron

Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has offered his congratulations on Mr Macron's victory and described him as a "friend of Algeria".

Mr Macron found himself backtracking during his campaign after describing France's history in Algeria as a "crime against humanity." 

He apologised after being criticised by French nationals who had to leave Algeria following the war of independence in 1962 but also said France had to face its past.

During the TV debate against far-right candidate Marine Le Pen, he insisted he was "neither in repentance nor in denial" and said it was time for a "new stage" in relations between the two countries.

Algeria was ruled by France for 132 years and 1.5 million Algerians died in the conflict over independence, the Algerian government says.

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Still one election to go

The World at One

BBC Radio 4

Macron faces a 'very hard' legislative election, says Le Figaro's Francois-Xavier Bourmaud

Emmanuel Macron faces a "very hard" parliamentary election next month as he will be challenged by the centre-right Republicans seeking "revenge", Le Figaro newspaper's Francois-Xavier Bourmaud says.

"There is still one election to go for him to be able to get his programme done." 

Who is the new First Lady?

macron and trogneux at the louvre
Reuters

First things first: theirs is not a common relationship.

That is paraphrased from words Mr Macron himself said on the couple's wedding day: that they were "not quite common, a couple not quite normal - not that I like this adjective very much - but a couple that exists".

There is an age gap of 24 years between the pair - the same as that between Donald and Melania Trump. The couple, he now 39 and she now 64, met when she was his drama teacher.

The 15-year-old Emmanuel was, by all accounts, intellectually precocious. He was a pupil at a private Jesuit school in Amiens where, Ms Trogneux later said, he "had a relationship of equals with other adults" rather than acting and speaking like a teenager.

She continued: "I was totally overcome by the intelligence of this boy."

Meet Brigitte Trogneux, the new First Lady

Macron's pick for PM?

le drian
AFP/Getty
Mr Le Drian (L) was the first Socialist heavyweight to back Macron

Defence Minister Yves Le Drian would make a good prime minister, according to Christophe Castaner, spokesman of Macron's En Marche (On The Move) movement. He was giving his personal opinion to France's BFMTV channel.

Mr Macron has not said who his choice will be but he did say in a radio interview on Friday that he had someone in mind.

Mr Le Drian was the first big Socialist politician to back Mr Macron rather than his own party's candidate, Benoît Hamon.

Other possible names mentioned by French media include current IMF head Christine Lagarde.

Who will be Macron's PM?

'No sign of being awed'

James Reynolds

BBC News, Paris

Emmanuel Macron inherits one of the most powerful positions in Europe, and all the symbolism that comes with it. This morning at the Arc de Triomphe, he showed no sign of being awed by his new job. 

He walked alongside the outgoing president, François Hollande, as the two laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The two then shook hands with veterans. 

Mr Macron appeared to take longer to make his way through one receiving line, stopping to talk to elderly men, leaving Mr Hollande to wait for him at the end. 

Emmanuel Macron now becomes France’s youngest leader since Napoleon, whose battles are commemorated at the Arc de Triomphe. The new president will hope that his own fights are less bloody.

Macron at Arc de Triomphe
Reuters

Risky eurozone transfers?

A business reporter, Ferdinando Giugliano, tweets that Mr Macron favours fiscal transfers in the eurozone - something that Germany has always resisted.

It would mean creating a new fund so that richer countries, like Germany, could give more help to struggling "periphery" countries like Greece. 

During the Greek debt crisis many economists have warned of the risk of "moral hazard". It means that, given a reliable safety net, a reckless government, or bank, can load itself with unsustainable debt. 

In 2015 I attended a lunch in London with Macron. What he said about EZ fiscal transfers was pretty remarkable (@FT… twitter.com/i/web/status/8…

Macron era - some key dates

What can we expect in the first weeks of the Macron presidency? 

Here's a brief timetable (courtesy of Le Monde and BFMTV):

  • 10 May - Definitive results of second round (official results are published here)
  • This week - Candidates for top government posts should be named
  • 14 May - Macron to be sworn in as president
  • 11 June - National Assembly (parliament) elections; Macron will have far fewer problems if he can get a majority (289 seats)
  • 18 June - National Assembly elections, second round

The BBC's Lucy Williamson examines how Team Macron is likely to take shape

What's in 'le Big Mac'?

Katya Adler

Europe Editor

What's really in "le Big Mac" (Macron)? asks BBC Europe editor Katya Adler.

"What struck me as I watched his giddy supporters dancing, singing and waving the French flag so excitedly at his election party at the Louvre is how little is really known about him," she writes.

"Socio-political divisions will become screamingly obvious in France now as it heads towards parliamentary elections."

Metro headline
Metro screenshot

Image of France 'changed'

"The world's view of us has changed", tweets Benjamin Griveaux, spokesman for Mr Macron's En Marche movement.

The country that long stood for revolution elected a centrist liberal who wants a strong - but reformed - EU.

Le regard du monde sur nous a changé.
#PresidentMacron

Le regard du monde sur nous a changé. #PresidentMacron

Pro-Macron Bordeaux 'sleepy'

Bordeaux in the south-west is a Macron stronghold, but celebrations were quite sleepy and subdued there last night, the BBC's Nuala McGovern reports.

The city's wealth was built on wine and the aeronautical industry. It is nicknamed "La Belle Endormie" (Sleeping Beauty). 

Etienne Millien, from Sud Ouest newspaper, told BBC World News TV that reaction was low-key because many understood the huge challenge facing Mr Macron - uniting a deeply divided country.

Etienne Millien (right) interviewed by BBC
BBC

Patriotic day

Another image of President Hollande and his successor Emmanuel Macron, from today's World War Two memorial ceremony in Paris. 

Mr Macron got Mr Hollande's firm backing in the election. Yet the Socialist president - very unpopular himself - was not happy last year when Mr Macron left to launch his En Marche movement.

Apparently Mr Hollande is not one to bear a grudge, however. He said Mr Macron "followed me", then "freed himself, but did not betray me".

Macron (left) and Hollande
AFP

Voters explain choice

French voters contacted by the BBC voiced caution about Emmanuel Macron. 

Some said they were motivated mainly to keep Marine Le Pen out of power.

Here are their reactions.

Voter Margot Cadic
Margot Cadic

BreakingMacron swearing-in on Sunday

Mr Macron will be sworn in as president on Sunday, 14 May.

The confirmation came from President Hollande, AFP news agency reports.

French 'rolled over like in 1940' - Leave.EU

The pro-Brexit campaign group Leave.EU is scornful of the staunch support for the EU that the new French president espouses. 

The right-wing British group thinks the French have repeated their defeat of 1940, when their country was occupied by the Nazis.  

The French rolled over in 1940. This time they've saved Germany the fuel and bullets. 🇫🇷 #Presidentielle2017

The French rolled over in 1940. This time they've saved Germany the fuel and bullets. 🇫🇷 #Presidentielle2017

Youngest leader since Louis-Napoléon

The youngest French president before Emmanuel Macron was Louis-Napoléon, nephew of Napoléon Bonaparte. He became president in 1848, at the age of 40.

He ruled as president until 1852, and from then until 1870 as French emperor, called Napoleon III. His demise was triggered by France's defeat by the Prussians at the Battle of Sedan.

By the way, Bonaparte himself became emperor when he was 35.

Louis-Napoleon, archive pic
AFP

Putin: Let's overcome mutual distrust

Russian President Vladimir Putin has urged Mr Macron to join forces against "violent extremism".

The Kremlin message said:

"The citizens of France entrusted you to lead the country in a difficult period for Europe and for the entire world community. 

"The growing threat of terrorism and violent extremism is accompanied by an escalation of local conflicts and the destabilisation of entire regions. 

"In these conditions it is especially important to overcome mutual distrust and join forces to ensure international stability and security."

Military ceremony at eternal flame

Mr Macron stood next to President Francois Hollande for a solemn ceremony at the Arc de Triomphe.

They are commemorating France's liberation from the Nazis in World War Two. 

They laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. A military choir sang a patriotic song, honouring the French Resistance forces.

Macron (left) with President Hollande
screenshot