Brexit could ‘trigger financial sector exit from London’

Job losses in the UK financial sector and the relocation of companies to elsewhere in the world will result from a vote of favour of a Brexit in next week’s referendum on the European Union, according to a report from an eminent financial think-tank.

The City of London’s place as a global business hub would be at risk because of reduced access to European markets, with an inevitable impact on service sector exports, warned the report from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

“London has for decades been one of two global financial hubs, alongside New York. A Brexit vote on June 23 would put that position at risk, almost certainly depriving UK-based financial firms of their passport to conduct business anywhere in the EU,” said the report.

“It is highly unlikely that continental European countries will allow unfettered British access to their financial services markets. EU countries may also be keen both to punish Britain for leaving and to use the opportunity to lure highly qualified financial experts to their own national centres, such as Frankfurt and Paris.

“The very likely result would be a substantial loss in UK services exports, both in financial activities and in associated business services such as accountancy, consulting and law.”