The Strategist

EY: Paris loses to Dublin in the fight for banks

07/12/2017 - 11:32

Large banks, insurers and other financial services companies prefer to move their headquarters to Dublin after Brexit, says Ernst & Young consulting company in a report.

William Murphy via flickr
William Murphy via flickr
EY’s report called "UK Attractiveness for Financial Services Investors", shows that of the 222 companies that provide financial services that cooperate with EY, 59 said they would like to transfer some employees or create a new unit in the EU after Brexit. 19 mentioned moving to Dublin or Ireland, which makes the country the most popular place of relocation of companies. The second place is occupied by Frankfurt – 18 companies chose the city.

Barclays, the oldest of the four major UK banks, is one of those that want to transfer operations to Dublin. In January, it was reported that the bank would establish a headquarters in the city. JPMorgan also bought office space there.

The small state of Luxembourg, known for its number of large corporations with tax bases there, ranks third: 11 companies mentioned the country. Paris, which is actively seeking to attract banks, found itself in the fourth place.

"Variety of declared places underscores that no European center is an alternative to London," said Omar Ali, Head of the British financial service EY.

It is expected that the number of banks announcing or discussing plans will grow in the coming weeks, especially after comments of Sabine Lautenschläger, deputy chairman of the Frankfurt Unified Oversight Mechanism, who monitors the financial stability of euro-zone banks.

Lautenschläger stated that banks should hurry and decide what they are going to do: "My message was very clear: hurry, think and decide, and contact us so that we can discuss your plans with respect to expectations of both sides."

The Office of Financial Regulation and Supervision’s deadline to submit contingency plans is set at the end of July.

So far, only a few banks and insurers have announced formal plans for relocation of personnel and operations from London as a result of expected loss of the rights of financial certification of the UK.

Over the past couple of weeks, three Japanese creditors (Daiwa, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group and Nomura) have confirmed that they will create new bases in Frankfurt, the financial center of Germany, after Brexit.

It is all about the so-called "bank passport", which, in fact, is an agreement that allows banks headquartered in the UK to access customers and financial markets in the 28 countries of the EU trade bloc. It includes a system of general financial rules signed by all countries - members of the passport network.

This means that an American or Japanese bank can establish a branch in London, after which the bank's branches will be allowed to operate on the continent. If the UK loses the passport, these branches will not be tied to a country in a single EU market and, therefore, will not be able to provide all necessary range of services.


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