JP Morgan in No Deal Brexit blow to London: U.S. bank set to move £183bn from the UK to Frankfurt
Pessimistic: JP Morgan Boss Jamie Dimon
Banking giant JP Morgan is shifting £183billion out of the UK to Frankfurt as it braces for a No Deal Brexit.
In a vote of no confidence over Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s ability to agree a financial services trade deal with the EU, it is transferring assets to bulk up operations on the continent.
This will allow the US bank to keep trading with European clients if the UK does not agree ‘passporting rights’ with the EU by the end of the year. JP Morgan, America’s biggest bank, has also told around 200 staff in London that they may have to move to another European financial hub.
The bank declined to comment, although it is understood that the UK will remain its biggest location in Europe for the foreseeable future.
Currently, the EU financial services passport allows UK banks and firms to do business with their European counterparts.
But as the end of the UK’s Brexit transition period draws ever closer, financial services firms are increasingly worried that Johnson will not thrash out a deal with the EU to retain passporting rights.
Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan’s long-standing chief executive, has been consistently pessimistic about the UK’s prospects post-Brexit.
Last year he said that a No Deal Brexit would be ‘a disaster for Great Britain’. Speaking at the Economic Club of New York, he added: ‘The Brits were dealt a bad hand and they played it badly.’
But Tory MP Andrew Bridgen raised an eyebrow at JP Morgan’s decision to boost its presence in Germany.
He said: ‘If they think Frankfurt is a better place for their business than London, the centre of the financial markets, that’s their corporate decision.We can’t allow merchant banks to subvert a democratic decision to leave the EU.’
JP Morgan helped to fund the Remain campaign, Britain Stronger in Europe, hinting in 2016 that it could quit the UK if Brexit happened.
And when Dimon shared a stage in Bournemouth in 2016 with the then-Chancellor George Osborne, he said leaving the EU would be a ‘terrible deal for the UK economy’.
In the run-up to the 2016 referendum, Dimon said the bank would need to cut around 4,000 jobs in the UK if the public voted to leave the EU.
He later revised this down to between 500 and 1,000.