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Brexit pushes London off top spot as financial centre

New_York_stock_exchangeUncertainty around Brexit has led to London losing its ranking as the world’s most attractive financial centre, according to a survey.

In the most recent Z/YEN Global Financial Centres Index London lost its top spot to New York for first time since March 2015.

With less than 200 days until the UK’s departure from the 28-member trading block, banks and asset managers have been moving jobs out of London to maintain access to the Europe’s single market for financial services.

The bi-annual survey of 100 global finance hubs, ranks cities according to factors such as ease of hiring quality staff, political stability and infrastructure.

London, which lost eight points since the previous survey in March, was nudged into second place after New York. Hong Kong and Singapore came third and fourth.

In July, the City of London Corporation forecast that between 3,500 and 12,000 jobs in the financial sector would go because of Brexit, with more likely to disappear in the medium to long-term.

Miles Celic, chief executive officer of the lobby group TheCityUK, said: "In a competitive world we cannot afford complacency. London and New York have long vied for the top spot of this index and the uncertainty around the future shape of Brexit is likely to be factor in their latest switch in positions.

“Most notable in this latest version of the GFCI is the continuing steady rise of the Asian centres. Hong Kong is now just three points behind London for the first time. Singapore, Shanghai and Tokyo are close behind.

“Given the fall in a number of North American centres as well, it is Asia, not Europe, where the challenge to London and the UK will come from in the years ahead.”

In total, the survey placed 12 European financial centres within the top 50, down from 14 in March this year.

Four of the 12 European centres in the top 50 were from UK financial centres: London, Edinburgh, Jersey, and Glasgow.

Just six of the 12 will be within the European Union when the UK leaves in March 2019.

The 12 European centres placed in the top 50 were:

2nd – London
9th – Zurich
10th – Frankfurt
21st – Luxembourg
23rd – Paris
27th – Geneva
35th – Amsterdam
37th – Dublin
41st – Hamburg
43rd – Edinburgh
47th – Jersey
50th – Glasgow

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