Macron loses absolute majority in parliament

STORY: In a crushing outcome, French President Emmanuel Macron and his allies on Sunday lost their absolute majority in the National Assembly - and with it control of the reform agenda.

Initial projections showed Macron's centrist Ensemble alliance were still set to end up with the most seats, followed by the left-wing Nupes bloc headed by the hard left veteran Jean-Luc Melenchon - who called the results Sunday a rout in front of cheering supporters.

But Macron and his allies would fall well short of the absolute majority they would need to control parliament.

If confirmed, a hung parliament would open up a period of political uncertainty that would require a degree of power-sharing among parties not experienced in France in recent decades.

In another major change for French politics, Marine Le Pen's far-right Rassemblement National party could win as much as 100 seats, the initial projections showed - its biggest score on record.

Le Pen said she wants to unite all 'patriots,' including those on left:

"The new faces that you will discover, faces beaming with enthusiasm and life, are the vanguard of this new political elite that will take responsibility for the country when the Macron adventure comes to an end. Beyond the parliamentary group, we will pursue the work of bringing together the French people, within a big popular movement, unifying all the patriots on both the right and the left, a national rally to defend the country in the face of crumbling, which we see every day."

Macron's ability to pursue further reform of the euro zone's second biggest economy would hinge on his ability to rally moderates outside of his alliance on the right and left behind his legislative agenda.

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