Switzerland and London challenged for wealth management supremacy

London Square MileLondon is expected to challenge Switzerland and Singapore for dominance in private banking and wealth management, while the UK capital itself comes under pressure from traditional centres like New York, and emerging centres like Dubai. Switzerland, Singapore and London - in that order - are the most successful international private banking and wealth management centres, according to business consultant PwC’s Global Private Banking and Wealth Management Survey, now in its 20th year. In two years' time London is expected to hold its third place position, despite competition from centres like New York and Dubai, while Switzerland and Singapore will face “far stronger” competition from London, says Jeremy Jensen, PwC’s leader of Europe, Middle East and Africa global private banking and wealth management. “Switzerland and Singapore will be facing stronger competition from London as the future for all international financial centres will increasingly be about differentiation around defined areas of expertise as transparency and increased regulatory demands create a more level playing field.” The survey also found that UK wealth managers only receive retrocessions on 3% of assets under management owing to the Retail Distribution Review and this is expected to fall to zero in the next two years. This is in sharp contrast to the global position where participants are more heavily dependent on this income. Industry growth is slow in Western Europe, while North America shows moderate growth, and in the emerging markets growth remains relatively high but has slowed in some areas. Jensen adds: “To these markets, we can add a further group of nascent emerging markets which are accumulating new wealth most rapidly, with net new money growth forecast as 16% in 2013. The multi-speed wealth management market is here to stay and wealth managers need to embrace this.” ©2013 funds europe

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