Wednesday 26 July 2017

Thousands of banking and finance firm workers prepare for London exodus

The City of London (Stock picture)
The City of London (Stock picture)

Kayleena Makortoff

Major banks and financial services firms are looking to shift some operations from London after UK Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed that Brexit would take Britain out of the EU single market.

Businesses which are mulling changes to their UK and EU operations:

* JP Morgan has said about 4,000 of its 16,000 UK staff could be moved out of Britain. The number could rise or fall depending on the outcome of Brexit negotiations.

* Goldman Sachs played down reports it could cut London staff in half to about 3,000 and organise transfers to New York and to a new subsidiary in Frankfurt. But chief executive Lloyd Blankfein said New York was already gaining from Brexit as the US bank pulled back on previous plans to expand in Britain.

* HSBC boss Stuart Gulliver has said the bank is on course to move 1,000 jobs to France, where it already has a full service universal bank after buying up Credit Commercial de France in 2002.

* Swiss bank UBS has said 1,000 of its 5,000 UK staff are involved in operations dependent on passport rights, which are expected to be lost as a result of Brexit.

* Lloyd's of London is on track to confirm Brussels as the site of its new EU subsidiary. The move could see around 100 jobs at the insurance market shifted to the continent.

* Insurance giant AIG will move less than a dozen London-based executives to Luxembourg to head up a new EU subsidiary as part of Brexit contingency plans. The company said in March it would retain its UK headquarters but turn its Luxembourg branch - which houses three staff - into a subsidiary meant to serve continental clients from 2019.

* Barclays is considering bulking up its Dublin offices - home to about 100 staff - after Britain leaves the EU. It is one of a number of EU cities the lender is eyeing as part of its Brexit contingency plans.

* Taxpayer-backed Lloyds Banking Group is expected to apply for a licence this year to convert its Bank of Scotland-branded branch in Berlin into an EU subsidiary. It is understood that few jobs will leave London as a result of the move.

* US bank Citigroup, which employs about 9,000 UK staff, is planning to shift its broker-dealer business to the EU.

* The London Stock Exchange has said a "few thousand jobs" will be lost if euro clearing operations leave the UK. However, chief executive Xavier Rolet said the move could also trigger the loss of about 232,000 jobs across related trading, syndication, distribution, risk management and IT.

* Japanese investment bank Daiwa is finalising plans to set up a new European base in Frankfurt. The office is expected to launch with fewer than 100 employees, staffed by a mix of local hires and transfers from other locations including London and Japan. Daiwa has around 450 employees across Europe, most of whom are based in London, which will remain its regional headquarters.

* Nomura is considering fully licensing its operations in Frankfurt. The lender already has a branch in the German city, though it is unclear how many London staff may be transferred once a final decision is made. The bank has around 2,500 staff based in London.

Irish Independent

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