City bankers dig in their heels at being asked to move to Frankfurt

City bankers show the red card to Frankfurt… and they’re not keen on relocating to Paris or Amsterdam either

Bankers based in London are digging in their heels at being asked to relocate to other European hubs after Brexit.

Staff at some of the City’s largest companies are quitting their jobs rather than move abroad, as alternatives including Frankfurt, Paris and Amsterdam are proving less than alluring.

Wall Street titans such as JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs, and Japanese giant Nomura are trying to convince traders to leave London for the Continent to staff desks which must be based in Europe due to rule changes after Brexit.

London calling: Staff at some of the City’s largest companies are quitting their jobs rather than move abroad

One JP Morgan banker told the Mail: ‘There have been problems – people don’t, and won’t, go to Frankfurt or Paris.

‘It’s not a surprise. They’ve got their kids and lifestyle set up. Frankfurt isn’t a great city. The French are not very welcoming to foreigners. The big cities are still London, New York and Hong Kong if you want to make real money.’

JP Morgan has seen a number of staff leave this year, which insiders have blamed on efforts to transplant teams to Paris.

But when a team of 15 London-based traders were asked to move to the French capital earlier this year, around half chose to quit rather than leave the UK, Bloomberg reported.

Eva Kingston, a partner specialising in financial services at recruiter Stanton Chase, said: ‘Where there is resistance, I think it’s usually to do with family circumstances – they have partners who want to stay here, or children in school.’

Kingston said she was meeting several bankers who would rather quit their job than leave London. 

‘We have had a lot of people coming to us who have been told to relocate, and they want to explore what other opportunities there might be in London rather than having to move abroad. 

‘Being asked to move to Frankfurt seems to be a particular problem – maybe it’s the distance.’

Nick Miller, a partner in the financial services practice of recruiter Odgers Berndtson, said some of the resistance to moving abroad might be due to a ‘Covid overlay’.

He said: ‘To people who have moved internationally in the past, the world felt increasingly small because you could just hop on a plane anywhere.

‘Now you’re weeks away from anywhere because of quarantine. We’ve had conversations with people about elderly parents and kids at school.’