Britain’s biggest banks are preparing to move out of the UK amid growing fears over the ramifications of leaving the European Union, a top banking boss has warned.
The head of the British Bankers’ Association, Anthony Browne, said “many smaller banks” are planning to move their operations overseas before Christmas.
Larger institutions, he said, are expected to follow within the first few months of 2017.
“Their hands are quivering over the relocate button,” he writes in The Observer.
“Banking is probably more affected by Brexit than any other sector of the economy, both in the degree of impact and the scale of the implications,” he said.
Mr Browne said banks have been left rattled by the tone of Brexit negotiations so far.
He said the rhetoric coming from EU and British politicians is “hardening” and uncertainty over the deal that will ultimately be agreed has left them with little option but to take steps to protect their futures.
“Most international banks now have project teams working out which operations they need to move to ensure they can continue serving customers, the date by which this must happen and how best to do it,” he said.