The Brexodus among financial service firms appears to be picking up pace – with Dublin and Frankfurt the main beneficiaries.
According to EY’s Brexit tracker, some 59 of 222 companies being monitored are either reviewing their options or have started moving parts of their business out of the UK.
That represents a significant increase on the 23 firms that had indicated similar intentions in March.
Some 19 businesses have said they are moving or considering moving staff or operations to Dublin – just ahead of Frankfurt as a preferred base (18).
Luxembourg, with 11, and Paris, with eight, come next in the Brexit moving story.
Omar Ali, EY’s UK financial services leader, said: “The difference three months on from the triggering of Article 50 is that we are seeing major financial brands put their contingency plans into action – over a quarter of the companies we track have suggested there will be potential changes to their London base as a result of Brexit.
“This process will only accelerate as firms finalise their submissions to the regulators on their Brexit plans.”
Insurer Legal & General said in May that it would move some of its investment management operations to Ireland to ensure it can continue to serve its customers after Brexit.
Banks including Japanese giants Daiwa and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group have announced plans to move some operations to Frankfurt to avoid Brexit “disruption”. Deutsche Bank was reported last week to be preparing to move large parts of the investment and trading business it currently books through London to its home city of Frankfurt.
France has been identified by HSBC as a new European base, with some 1,000 London jobs to be transferred to Paris, while JP Morgan is also in the process of shifting a similar number of jobs out of the City to offices in Frankfurt, Luxembourg and Dublin in the coming months.
‘Over a quarter of the companies we track have suggested there will be potential changes to their London base as a result of Brexit’
Mr Ali said no single centre was emerging as the prime alternative to London.
“However, these operational changes also highlight a real risk to European businesses and the wider economy, as the fragmentation of European financial services could increase costs and limit the breadth and depth of finance options for European corporates,” he added.