London’s 10 biggest investment banks have spent more than £1bn preparing for the UK’s impending departure from the European Union, sparking anger among City executives about the vast expense Brexit is causing business.
According to research, the major investment banks have spent an average of £100m each trying to make their operations Brexit-ready.
Gina Miller, the fund manager and prominent anti-Brexit campaigner, said: “No sector can escape the spending preparations for a no-deal Brexit, but it is a ludicrous waste of money when there is no parliamentary majority or will for a catastrophic no-deal to happen.”
Smaller investment banks not among the City’s 10 biggest have also spent “tens of millions of pounds” preparing for the UK’s exit from the EU, lobbyists said. Costs have come from a combination of consultancy fees, changes to technology systems, legal costs, new or expanding office space, hiring or creating teams in London dedicated to Brexit planning, and moving employees to the continent.
Financial services companies have so far shifted 1,800 jobs to the continent as a result of Brexit, and 7,000 roles could eventually be relocated, according to a survey by EY, the accounting firm. Bankers from Deutsche Bank, BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, Credit Suisse, Societe Generale, Morgan Stanley and UBS have been told they will have to quit the capital.
Vishal Vedi, financial services Brexit leader at Deloitte, the accountancy firm, said costs could spiral still further after the UK leaves the EU. “After April, we expect this to ramp up,” he said.
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